RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The COVID-19 pandemic has forced a popular bar in Richmond’s Fan District to shut down for good.
After more than a decade in business, F.W. Sullivan’s is closing the doors. Now, a “For Sale” sign hangs in front of the dark and empty bar on W. Main Street.
“We were a social center and a social center does not work in this time of social distancing,” co-owner Jake Crocker told 8News.
The bar, which opened in 2009, has been closed to customers since March. Crocker recalls the uncertainty of St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
“Imagine waking up that morning knowing that something’s happening but not knowing that the next morning the businesses that you’ve had over a decade would not be open. I mean, it was that quick. We had no idea,” Crocker said.
The owners were unable to find a way to successfully re-open the bar with social distancing.
“We’re a high-volume place. We’re not a high-price, sit-down dinner type of place,” Crocker added.
The co-owner said he was shocked by the thousands of comments and messages he has received on social media after announcing Sullivan’s closure. Richmonders shared their memories of the popular bar.
“Posting pictures of their pets that they’ve named after Sullivan’s, heck, my pet is even named after this place. And their engagement pictures because they met here,” Crocker explained.
He expressed his gratefulness to the community for keeping the business going for 11 years.
“If I had everybody who ever walked in this door’s phone number, I’d want to call them all up individually and say thank you,” Crocker said.
The F.W. Sullivan’s building is now up for sale and Crocker hopes it can find a new life.
Meanwhile, Crocker will stay busy running his other restaurant, Lady N’awlins Cajun Cafe, which is open with social distancing precautions in place. It sits right across the street from the former Sullivan’s building at 2329 W. Main Street.
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