Power & Light’s outdoor dining draws customers as some restaurants, businesses reopen

KC Comeback

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Parts of Power & Light reopened Friday with a big draw being the new street dining along 14th Street.

Friday was the first time, in three months, Zack Schneller and his friends got to enjoy dinner at a restaurant.

“Seeing each other over Snapchat is cool and all but nothing like the human-to-human interaction,” Schneller said.

The three friends work downtown. They saw dining tables in the middle of 14th Street and decided to checkout Bristol Seafood+Steak+Social. The street, between Main and Grand, will be closed through at least June.

“I think every restaurant in the area should be doing something like this in some shape or capacity,” Schneller said.

Bristol and The Dubliner set up dining tables outside their businesses after the Kansas City Council, on Thursday, passed a package of ordinances allowing restaurants to serve customers on the sidewalk and streets. Businesses must first apply for a permit, which is free.

“It’s definitely different, but we think it’s a great idea,” said Ryan Haverty, owner of The Dubliner.

He said the extra space frees up their already limited indoor operation and makes it easier to follow social distancing guidelines.

“The main thing for us is to make people feel like they’re at home and they’re safe and comfortable, but in a social setting,” Haverty said.

Mike Wilson, who dined at an indoor restaurant Thursday, said street dining is a lot less stressful.

“It gives you a little more space out here, instead of being confined inside a building,” Wilson said.

Other restaurants and entertainment districts could soon follow Power & Light’s lead. It’s a move Schneller and his friends fully support.

“We think it’s definitely the move for sure,” he said. “Even when the virus goes away, I feel like this should stay for sure.”

Power & Light restaurants now open for in-venue dining include:

  • Bristol Seafood+Steak+Social
  • Chipotle
  • County Road Ice House
  • Dubliner
  • Protein House
  • Whopper Bar
  • Yard House

Additional openings include:

  • Polished Nail Salon (Fri. May 15)
  • Posh KC (Sat. May 16)
  • Johnny’s Tavern (Mon. May 18, for in-venue dining)
  • Bare Med Spa (Mon. May 18)
  • Blade + Timber (Wed. May 20, for in-venue dining)

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