Memphis restaurants suffer in coronavirus outbreak

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Local restaurants are seeing a hit as more and more people stay home to avoid spreading the novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19.

“It’s like turning a faucet off and literally we were down Saturday and Sunday by 80%,” Belly Acres owner Lee Scifres said.

Belly Acres, in Overton Square, will offer customers more options to eat outside of the restaurant.

“We’re going to focus on takeout, curbside take out,” Scifres said. “Kids eat free which we typically only do on Wednesday. Now it’s every day of the week which includes to-go.”

Belly Acres is not the only restaurant dealing implementing changes to address coronavirus. Memphis Pizza Cafe General Manager Kevin Hawkins said the restaurant is taking additional steps to keep the dining room clean.

“We’ve cleaned our tables off and we’re putting out menus and napkins as needed,” Hawkins said. “We’re giving away Parmesan and red pepper packets instead of giving away the shakers.”

Both restaurants recommend people practice social distancing when going out to eat.

Several states are requesting restaurants shift to delivery or pick-up orders only. At this time, there’s no decision made for the entire state of Tennessee.

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