Bellaire, Texas – The inside of the Dandelion Cafe in Bellaire was dark on Monday. The establishment’s current plans call for it to stay that way for another week.
Co-owner Sarah Lieberman said the cafe has temporarily closed due to a rise in COVID cases.
“Our whole management had tested positive so our options were, we shorten our hours and run on a skeleton crew, and then everybody probably gets it anyway, or we close early and we try to prevent people from getting it,” Lieberman said.
Lieberman said that she and about a third of the staff have tested positive despite receiving the vaccine.
“We decided it was in the best interest of the staff, our customers, and everyone’s families to close,” she said, noting the decision was voluntary.
Other local establishments posted on Instagram that they too would be temporarily closed for different lengths of times, citing the virus and the omicron variant.
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo shared concerns about omicron on Monday after one person in Harris County was said to have died from the variant.
“I understand the impulse to just tune out the latest news and just be sick and tired of all of this. But, as we’ve been expecting, the Omicron variant of COVID-19 has arrived in full force,” Hidalgo said.
Lieberman said she has the means to briefly close but knows others may not.
“We have staff that have small children,” she said. “And the priority is people rather than the business at that time.”
The cafe plans to stay closed until Dec. 27.