FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla. – Business has bounced back for The Golden Lion Cafe and owner Chris Marlow believes it’s mostly because his staff is following CDC guidelines to keep everyone safe during the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’re actually busier right now than when we were this time last year,” Marlow said. “Our staff is all wearing gloves. We switched to one-time use cups, menus, place mats.”
Marlow said they do daily employee temperature checks, retrained staff on sanitation and cleaning and posted social distancing signs throughout the open-air restaurant.
"We're trying really hard here to do the right thing and do what the CDC tells you to do and keep people safe," he said.
Officials with Flagler County’s Tourism Department said they want to highlight restaurants like The Golden Lion Cafe by launching a program called, “Pledge to Prevent.” The department will list the participating businesses that are following the rules to slow the spread of COVID-19.
“We kept reading and seeing that when visitors are ready to travel again, some of the things they’ll be looking for are, ‘What are the safety and sanitation protocols that businesses have in place?’” said Executive Director of Tourism Amy Lukasik.
Lukasik said once a restaurant commits to the pledge, staff members will receive face masks, place mats, a decal and a certificate.
"We do hope that many restaurants will participate and these are businesses that we will let potential visitors know that are participating in the program, so they know where to go and visit them," she said.
Lukasik said 50 businesses have expressed interest and she said her team will start approaching restaurants sometime this week.
Marlow said he plans to have his restaurant be on that list.
“Everybody that comes into the restaurant now, it’s like they’re coming in again for the first time. They’re looking to see, are people doing what they’re supposed to be doing? They might see that certification and maybe they’ll feel more safe,” he said.
Tourism-related businesses that would like to participate in the program can email email@example.com.