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Canton restaurant temporarily closes in Baltimore, plans to move to county due to dining ban

Posted at 9:51 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 23:14:40-05

BALTIMORE — Two Canton restaurants in Baltimore are temporarily closing because of the city's dining ban.

The owner of Nacho Mama's and Mama's On The Half Shell said it no longer made sense to stay open after the city ordered restaurants to shutdown indoor and outdoor dining.

“Without anything, but carryout, you can’t make payroll under those conditions," said owner Jackie McCusker. "If you don’t have the people coming in dining, you don’t have a business.”

She said the decision was an incredibly difficult decision, knowing she would have to lay off her staff.

“That decision was so painful," she said. "We all, the managers, all of us…nobody is sleeping.”

While Mama's On The Half Shell is closed in the city, it will be open in the county. McCusker said she has decided to merge with her other restaurants, Nacho Mama's in Towson, where restaurants are open at 50 percent capacity.

"We are going to kind of do a hybrid of the two. Two menus. It’s a good thing. And it keeps and preserves some jobs as well.”

McCusker said it’s tough on businesses when a nearby area has different restrictions, adding she’s hoping the city will lift the ban to allow restaurants to operate at 25 percent capacity.

“I don’t know who is right but I know that we need to get to work. i know everybody is doing the best they to manage COVID the way they think COVID should be managed," she said.

McCusker said she will reopen her restaurants when the dining ban in the city is lifted.