Although Memphis started its Back to Business plan on Monday, many restaurants are struggling with the transition to the new normal.Tony Sarwar, owner of Tony’s Trophy Room in Collierville, is just one of the many restaurant owners devastated by the coronavirus.
“I think everybody in this area got caught off guard,” Sarwar during an interview on “Wake Up Memphis with Robyn Walensky” on The Mighty 990. “We’ve never seen anything like this.”
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He explained that the people in the restaurant industry typically are the ones living paycheck-to-paycheck, so this pandemic has been especially scary.“It’s extremely scary,” he added.
Tony’s Trophy Room has around 20 employees.
“We opened up yesterday for our first day,” Sarwar said. “It was a very interesting first day.”Police officers checked in with the restaurant multiple times Monday, saying people in the community were concerned that they were not following the proper safety guidelines.
“We hope people understand we are trying to do the best we can do to operate and open and abide by the guidelines,” he told Robyn. “We want to get the economy going.”
The Mighty 990 confirmed that the restaurant was going above and beyond to make sure they were practicing social distancing guidelines — going so far as to use a tape measure to ensure tables were spaced six feet apart.
“We’re just trying to open and operate and help ourselves get out of the financial side of things,” he said. “People aren’t used to seeing people gathered anymore.”
Click here to listen to Robyn’s entire interview with Tony Sarwar.