BORING, Ore. — A line formed out the door during the lunch rush at the Carver Hangar, a family-owned restaurant and sports bar, and waitresses zipped in and out of the kitchen trying to keep up with orders as customers backed up in the lobby.
Indoor dining has been banned in much of Oregon for nearly two months, but the eatery 20 miles southeast of Portland was doing a booming business — and an illegal one. The restaurant’s owners, Bryan and Liz Mitchell, fully reopened Jan. 1 in defiance of Democratic Gov. Kate Brown’s COVID-19 indoor dining ban in their county despite the risk of heavy fines and surging coronavirus cases.
“We’re not going to back down because our employees still need to eat, they still need that income,” said Bryan Mitchell, as customers ate at tables spaced 6 feet apart. “The statement that we’re making is, ‘Every life is essential. You have the right to survive. Nobody should tell you what you can and cannot do to provide for your family.’”
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