MONTAGUE – Dog-n-Suds are an iconic brand that has been serving Coney Dogs and Root Beer to patrons for 67 years.
This iconic restaurant is a staple in the city, and has been a big part of the local culture. The 1950s-style drive-in restaurant has been serving Montague patrons since the 1960s.
The drive-in layout has allowed Dog-n-Suds to continue to serve customers while maintaining social distancing.
Although Dog-n-Suds has experienced a slight decrease in business due to the coronavirus, the unique drive-in style of the restaurant has been a huge asset. This has given them the ability to serve customers while they remain safely in their vehicles.
Dog-n-Suds has made small adjustments, including closing off the picnic table area temporarily to adhere to social distancing standards, but are fortunate that major changes were not necessary to keep customers and employees safe.
There are a lot of restaurants that have had to adjust their business models to be able to serve customers while keeping their indoor dining areas closed. Most have utilized take-out and curbside pick-up options.
Closing indoor dining areas has dramatically affected most restaurants. Some restaurants are using the profits made from take-out and curbside orders to cover utilities and just keep the lights on. The local restaurants are treading water, and hoping they will be able to open their doors soon, especially with summer right around the corner.
The uncertainty that comes with the coronavirus, and the effects it might have on summer tourism, has created some unease amongst local business owners.
“We are concerned if the tourists aren’t going to show up like they have done in the past. Montague is a tourist-centered town,” said Jason Jaekel, owner of Dog-n-Suds.
Some Montague businesses that are seasonal might depend solely on the influx of people rushing to the lakeshore to enjoy their summer. Jaekel hopes the virus will not affect the boost in sales he and other local business experience because of tourism.
Along with his concern, he is also very grateful for the locals who support the restaurant.
“We love our locals, they are the ones that keep us going all year round,” Jaekel said.
The ability for local businesses to hone in on what they do great, or become creative to adjust to current circumstances, just shows how strong small businesses are. It also shows how strong the local community behind these local businesses can be when they band together to support one another.