The Winds Cafe reopens today after temporary closure

The Winds Café in Yellow Springs has announced it will reopen today, Thursday Nov. 5, after shutting down temporarily due to a staff member testing positive for COVID-19, owners said in a Facebook post.

The restaurant at 215 Xenia Ave. in downtown Yellow Springs will open at noon for lunch and will offer dinner service through 9 p.m., and it will resume its normal hours going forward, the restaurant’s ownership said. The Winds Wine Cellar adjacent to the restaurant also will reopen today, from noon to 8 p.m.

“After consultation with the Greene County Health Department and an abundance of deep cleaning, we will reopen for dining,” the restaurant’s Facebook announcement said. “Thanks for all your love and support.”

Late last week, the restaurant announced it had “a positive test result for one of our beloved team members" and would be "closed until we feel our restaurant and team members can be safe.”

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In Facebook comments to that announcement, customers of The Winds praised the owners for their transparency. There is no specific legal requirement in Ohio that mandates restaurant owners must disclose staff members' positive COVID-19 tests.

“Thank you for doing the right thing,” one commenter wrote. Another said, “Best wishes for a speedy recovery and safe reopening.”

In recent weeks, several other Miami Valley restaurants have faced a similar situation and have reopened after deep cleaning and negative tests among all employees.

According to Responsible Restart Ohio protocols created by state health officials and Gov. Mike DeWine to help keep the coronavirus pandemic in check, it is mandatory for bars and restaurants to “immediately isolate and seek medical care for any individual who develops symptoms while at work, contact the local health district about suspected cases or exposures, and shut down the area for deep sanitation if possible.”

The “recommended best practices” in such cases call upon a restaurant or bar to “work with the local health department to identify potentially infected or exposed individuals to help facilitate effective contact tracing/notifications; once testing is readily available, test all suspected infections or exposures; and following testing, contact the local health department to initiate appropriate care and tracing,” according to the Responsible Restart Ohio document.

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