PASADENA (CBSLA) — Thanksgiving night offered several options for outdoor dining in Pasadena, where the city is not forcing restaurants to shut down despite a county health order that is banning in-person dining for at least three weeks.
The restaurants on Colorado Blvd were busy, and people were grateful to have options.
“I’m thankful it’s open and thankful it’s somewhat normal, somewhat not,” said Pasadena resident Anita Chan. “We do the best we can every day.”
Anita Chan is eating al fresco Thursday night because she said she supports the Pasadena City Council and its health department, which made the decision to continue to allow in-person dining, despite the L.A. County Public Health Department eliminating that option in the rest of the county.
“I don’t think that it’s necessarily increasing the cases with people sitting al fresco at restaurants,” said Avinesh Seth, who ate outdoors on Thanksgiving.
Seth and his girlfriend went out for dessert — a bit of comfort for them after eight months in this pandemic.
“With outdoor at least you get the experience,” he said. “Maybe it’s not the same ambiance, but still. And right now, it’s the perfect weather, especially on a holiday you want to indulge on comfort food.”
Another patron, Lanzhu Jian, said their biggest worry isn’t contracting coronavirus, it’s the possibility of restaurant employees losing their jobs.
“I think this pandemic hits the restaurant business the most,” they said. “And it’s really unfair for them to take up all of the loss.”
“I want to support local restaurants because I don’t want them to close. If they close, I don’t think they’ll get open again.”
Many restaurants were closed for the holiday, but those that remained open made sure to keep tables spaced out and had servers in masks. Customers said they felt safe.
“I’m here with my kids and my husband,” said Lorena Tomb. “I feel like restaurants have gone above and beyond to try to sanitize and separate tables. We’re outdoors for God’s sake and it’s November. They’ve managed to make it work.”