The Memorial Day tornadoes’ path of destruction included homes, commercial buildings and retail businesses, including several restaurants.
The rebuilding process will take weeks, months, if not longer.
But some restaurants have been working tirelessly to get back to business.
Here is an update on some of the businesses that had to close down temporarily for repairs, big or small, in the aftermath of the storms. Some are now open for business, while others are still early in their rebuilding efforts.
Debris and glass were covering the floor when owner Joe Castellano arrived at the Amber Rose European Restaurant at 1400 Valley St. the morning after the storms. The storm trashed the roof of the historic restaurant, blew out its windows and damaged an exterior wall.
The restaurant reopened for dinner service on Wednesday, June 12. The hours the rest of this week will be 4 to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday.
“We are going to reopen the dining room,” he said. “The building is structurally sound.”
The restaurant will be closed on Mondays for ongoing repair work. Lunch service will resume Tuesday, June 18.
“It will feel real good just to get back to a sense of normal,” Castellano said.
The Domino’s Pizza store at 1450 Kuntz Road near Stanley Avenue and Troy Street reopened on Monday, June 10, after suffering damage in the Memorial Day tornadoes.
The business had some roof and exhaust-fan damage, said Tristan Koehler, the franchise owner of the Kuntz Road pizza shop and several other Dayton Domino’s locations.
That Domino’s location offered a special deal on Wednesday, June 12, to help the community, with all sales from a $1.99 medium one-topping pizza offer to be donated to the Dayton Foodbank.
Customer turnout for the special offer was robust, and generated long lines, even though four other Domino’s stores were making pizzas for the event in addition to the Kuntz Road location.
“We had a great event — we sold over 2,200 pizzas,” Domino’s Dayton-area franchisee Tristan Koehler told this news outlet. “Our total donation to the food bank will be $4,657, and that includes some extra cash from the ‘contribution jar’ — like a tip jar but all the money was marked for donation.”
SPORTY’S TAPHOUSE & GRILL
Sporty’s Taphouse & Grill, — the sports bar and restaurant that operates in the space that formerly housed iconic restaurant The Barnsider and later, Liquid Sports Club — reopened its bar on Wednesday, June 12, and if all goes as planned, the kitchen was set to reopen Thursday June 13, managing member Howard Mason told this news outlet.
Sporty’s, which has 60 taps, and 18 televisions, is located at 5202 N. Main St. in Harrison Twp.
“Several buildings around us were destroyed. We were spared, and only had minor damage,” Mason said. “We needed to replace windows, doors, roofing and the biggest line item, a rooftop HVAC unit was blown off of our roof and crash landed in the rear parking lot.”
“We just got electricity restored Tuesday. We re-opened Wednesday as a bar only. When the gas is restored and our new food is delivered Thursday morning, we will re-open our kitchen Thursday afternoon,” Mason said June 12.
The Chick-fil-A restaurant near the Mall at Fairfield Commons in Beavercreek reopened on June 6 after damage from the tornadoes.
“The damage we suffered was significant, which led to a 10-day closure, but what we sustained pales in comparison to some of our neighbors,” a spokeswoman for the Chick-fil-A at 2360 N. Fairfield Road told this news outlet.
OTHER RESTAURANTS STILL PICKING UP THE PIECES
Among the other restaurants still picking up the pieces after suffering damage from the tornadoes include:
Wings Sports Bar Vandalia
The owners of Wings Sports Bar & Grille on North Dixie Drive in Butler Twp. are vowing to come back "better than ever" after the pub was damaged in the Memorial Day tornadoes.
Chad and Mary Macek, owners of the pub at 7902 N. Dixie Drive in Butler Twp., told this news outlet that the damage was “pretty bad, and we are all devastated. The patio is gone. In the main building, there is a lot of exterior cleanup needed and damage. ... but we will be back and better than ever when ready! Just need to keep our heads up and be thankful no one was hurt!”
The Maceks also own and operate a second location of Wings Sports Bar & Grille after buying and renaming Beef O’Brady’s in the Beaver Valley Shopping Center in Beavercreek in January 2019.
Donato’s Pizza in Harrison Twp.
The Donatos Pizza shop at 5120 N. Main St. in Harrison Twp. is closed due to weather damage, according to the store’s Facebook page. “We will post updates as we rebuild the store, so please stay tuned,” Donato’s officials wrote.
The Dayton area’s only Primanti Bros. restaurant will be closed until further notice.
“We had no major structural damage,” a Primanti Bros. spokesman said the day after the tornadoes. There was some roof damage, and there was damage to the building’s exterior and windows, and there is debris inside the restaurant.
We have reached out to a spokesman for Primanti Bros. and will update this story with any new developments.
“It looks like a war zone,” Enrique Alvarez, who oversees El Toro Bar & Grill restaurants in the Dayton area, told this news outlet the morning after the tornadoes. The former Abuelo’s Mexican restaurant on North Fairfield Road across from the Mall at Fairfield Commons was in the process of being transformed into an El Toro location.
“We have pieces of plywood and two-by-fours that went through the exterior wall,” Alvarez said. Rocks and pebbles from a parking lot were picked up and dumped inside the restaurant and also are embedded in walls, he said.
On Tuesday, June 12, Alvarez said El Toro is working with its insurance company and contractors “to figure it all out,” and added, “I believe we will be able to get (the rebuilding) done.”
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