Family support gets father and son restaurant owners through pandemic setbacks

Local News

CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WRIC) — Virginia restaurants are operating at half capacity on what is normally one of the industry’s busiest days of the year — Father’s Day.

The Healy family owns eight restaurants in the Greater Richmond region, including Casa Del Barco, Island Shrimp Co., and The Boathouse.

Dad Kevin said the coronavirus has tested their restaurants’ resolve but co-owning these businesses with his sons, Kyle and Colin, is a dream come true. He said his daughter Paige is also involved, though she wasn’t present for the interview on Sunday.

The family said this Father’s Day has been one of their busiest since the pandemic began but things still aren’t back to normal.

“I always knew my dad was a hard worker but now I really know,” said Kyle Healy.

The coronavirus put the family to the test, forcing them to close all of their restaurants at once to adopt a takeout and delivery model.

“To have them all shut down on the same day, it was very traumatic so it was great to have the support of the family,” Kevin Healy said.

On a normal Father’s Day, Healy said sales tend to increase by about 40 percent. With ‘Phase Two’ restrictions still in place, Healy said they are operating at about 65% capacity between indoor and outdoor seating.

Healy added that reopening has been especially challenging at one of their newest restaurants — Island Shrimp Co., which opened in the Chesterfield Town Center in September 2019. Before the pandemic, he said they expected business to pick up this summer.

“It hasn’t been as busy as we would like or as busy as our other restaurants but it’s a beautiful space, the food is delicious and the staff is great so we’re very confident,” Kevin Healy said.

Gov. Ralph Northam said that ‘Phase Three’ could start as early as Friday, June 26 if the data continues to support that decision.

The Healy’s said they’re prepared to lift their capacity limits while taking other precautions to keep customers safe.

They said they have already implemented staggered staff schedules and adopted contactless service using QR codes to allow customers to scan menus with their phones.

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