By: Jonathan Phelps, New Hampshire Union Leader
At several restaurants under the Common Man restaurant brand, owner Alex Ray will build out patios to start serving customers in person again.
The Common Man locations in Claremont and Merrimack and the Tilton Diner will soon have outdoor dining space to serve customers on May 18. The spaces will need to be cleared by the liquor commission for alcohol sales.
“There won’t be a picnic table from Rhode Island to Canada,” Ray said with a chuckle. “I’m serious, at least in the New Hampshire corridor.”
On Friday, Gov. Chris Sununu announced restaurants are able to “expand outside wherever an outdoor area can be set up safely, such as parking spaces close to entrances, sidewalks, existing patios, lawn areas.” Tables must be 6-feet a part with a maximum of six people.
Sununu said all restaurants have different business models.
“We’ve had some restaurants come and say, ‘Unless I can fill 75% of my seats, it’s not even going to work for us, so don’t even try,’” Sununu said. “Others are smaller establishments that have the available space and can sit just as many people outside.”
It’s a good first step as the summer draws near, Sununu said.
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