By Karen Morfitt

DENVER (CBS4) – The quiet empty tables at Roxy on Broadway are a change that owner Paula Vrakas says she will never get used to.

“It’s devastating,” she said of her Denver restaurant.

Under new restrictions starting at the end of the week, business inside will be banned, which for her means immediate cuts.

“I need to lay off my staff. I laid off over half my staff an hour ago. It sucks,” Vrakas said.

With the three staff members left, they are putting everything they have into what is allowed, which for them is takeout and a 7 table patio.

“I’ll be honest. If we close the doors I’m going to default on loans. I’m going to default on personal loans. I’m going to default on food bills, like through our main food suppliers. I’m going to default on liquor and beer vendors. Because that’s the only chance that I have,” Vrakas said.

She’s not alone. According to the Colorado Restaurant Association’s most recent survey, if inside dining were to close down again 79% of restaurants say they will consider closing permanently in six months, 59% say it would be three months and 24% say it would only be a month.

While Vrakas continues to wait for grants and loans to be approved, she says the governor’s talk of legislative action is promising but needs to happen fast.

“I think I speak for all small business owners. We have been told that so many times … maybe we’ll get something but at the same time we’ve been slapped in the face so many times … that we are a little hesitant to get excited,” she said.

And after all of that, she says she’s not ready to give up.

“I promised them that I would not let the music die here at Roxy and there’s nothing that I’m going to not do to at least try to open the doors again,” she said.

Karen Morfitt

Comments (3)
  1. Kim says:

    This is the liberal(democrat) vision for Amerika

    1. kevin says:

      I’m sorry, who is president again during this horrific crisis of epic proportions?

  2. WSG says:

    Yay! I keep cheering on our local and state leadership, closing local businesses, laying employees off etc. I vote for people that want to keep places open and allow personal choices, they didn’t win this year. That is fine I accept it. This must be what the majority of people want, so I am now in full support of local and state government closing businesses down, limiting their capacity, placing undue restrictions on them etc.

    Personally: I keep saying they should stop paying their taxes in protest. If the government really wanted to help, stop having these businesses pay taxes along with their employees. They shut them down yet continue to expect full taxes on the measly sales they do make.


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