Concord offers grants to help restaurants make indoor dining safer

As the seasons change, restaurants will soon be losing the ability to offer outdoor dining,

As the seasons change, restaurants will soon be losing the ability to offer outdoor dining, but the Concord City Council has come up with a way for some to make up the lost revenue.>> Download the free WMUR appRestaurants in Concord will have to stop outdoor dining in a couple of weeks to make way for snow removal, ending a critical source of revenue as they try to continue operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.”All that expanded dining opportunity that really helped restaurants get through the spring, summer and fall, that’s going away,” said Tim Sink, president of the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce.The Concord City Council came up with another way to help restaurants, by using money from a canceled fireworks show. The Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce is administering the grants.”The initial fund is $15,000,” Sink said. “There may be opportunity to expand that. We’re going to see how that goes.”The money is meant to bolster indoor dining capacity, but exactly how to do that will be left to the restaurateur.”For instance, dividers inside a restaurant — that’s a perfect use for this,” Sink said. “There are air purification systems that can be installed in restaurants, so we’re looking at things like that.””I think it’s going to help some of them, particularly with the price of barriers,” said Tom Boucher, president and CEO of Great New Hampshire Restaurants. “You know, it’s $1,500, and any amount is helpful.”Boucher said some people are still reluctant to dine in, so additional precautions might help mitigate concerns. He said his restaurants are installing air purifiers designed to kill viruses, including the coronavirus.”All of our locations will have those air purifiers,” Boucher said. “And they were not inexpensive, but we just felt it was the right thing to do, to get people to feel safe dining at Great New Hampshire Restaurants.”As for the grants, Sink said five restaurants have already applied.”They can do an online application on the chamber’s website, and it’s not very difficult to fill out,” he said.The deadline for restaurants to apply is Nov. 20.

As the seasons change, restaurants will soon be losing the ability to offer outdoor dining, but the Concord City Council has come up with a way for some to make up the lost revenue.

>> Download the free WMUR app

Restaurants in Concord will have to stop outdoor dining in a couple of weeks to make way for snow removal, ending a critical source of revenue as they try to continue operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“All that expanded dining opportunity that really helped restaurants get through the spring, summer and fall, that’s going away,” said Tim Sink, president of the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce.

The Concord City Council came up with another way to help restaurants, by using money from a canceled fireworks show. The Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce is administering the grants.

“The initial fund is $15,000,” Sink said. “There may be opportunity to expand that. We’re going to see how that goes.”

The money is meant to bolster indoor dining capacity, but exactly how to do that will be left to the restaurateur.

“For instance, dividers inside a restaurant — that’s a perfect use for this,” Sink said. “There are air purification systems that can be installed in restaurants, so we’re looking at things like that.”

“I think it’s going to help some of them, particularly with the price of barriers,” said Tom Boucher, president and CEO of Great New Hampshire Restaurants. “You know, it’s $1,500, and any amount is helpful.”

Boucher said some people are still reluctant to dine in, so additional precautions might help mitigate concerns. He said his restaurants are installing air purifiers designed to kill viruses, including the coronavirus.

“All of our locations will have those air purifiers,” Boucher said. “And they were not inexpensive, but we just felt it was the right thing to do, to get people to feel safe dining at Great New Hampshire Restaurants.”

As for the grants, Sink said five restaurants have already applied.

“They can do an online application on the chamber’s website, and it’s not very difficult to fill out,” he said.

The deadline for restaurants to apply is Nov. 20.

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