A restaurant in Sandusky, Michigan, defied orders to close, accumulated $5,000 in fines, and stayed afloat by raising more than $10,000 through GoFundMe, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced a new order that requires all restaurants to close dining rooms for three weeks beginning Nov. 18.
Tonight, @MichiganHHS issued an emergency order that enacts a three-week pause, targeting indoor social gatherings and other group activities to curb our state’s rising #COVID19 infection rates. pic.twitter.com/yEc0enVPBX
— Governor Gretchen Whitmer (@GovWhitmer) November 16, 2020
The Sandusky restaurant remained open and operated under the Big Boy Restaurant Group franchise name. The corporation notified the restaurant that they would take legal action if the restaurant continued to defy state orders or use the franchise’s name, reported the Detroit Free Press. In response, the restaurant disassociated with the corporation, ending a 35 year partnership, and renamed themselves the “Sandusky Diner,” according to The Detroit News. (RELATED: Maine Restaurant Owner Tells Tucker Carlson It’s Time To Defy Governor And Lockdown And Go Back To Work)
The former Big Boy restaurant received a cease and desist letter from the Sanilac County Health Department claiming that the restaurant had defied state orders regarding masks, gatherings, and protective measures. The restaurant was fined $5,000 due within 30 days, the Detroit Free Press reported. (RELATED: ‘It’s Supposed To Be A Free Country’: Restaurant Refuses To Follow State Mask Mandate)
Supporters asked manager Troy Tank to start a GoFundMe page so they could help pay the fines. As of Tuesday, the restaurant has raised $10,975.
Tank said he would close the restaurant if the state paid him and his employee’s while the ordinance was in effect. He said that the first shutdown was devastating for the restaurant and they were not in a position to be able to do that again. “If we’re going to go down, we’re going to go down with a fight,” said Tank, according to the Detroit Free Press.