BYOB initiative encourages residents to dine outside in Westport
WESTPORT — The Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce launched a new initiative, BYOB — Bring Your Own Blanket — as a way to aid restaurants with outdoor dining in the cooler months.
Backed by the Town of Westport, lawn signs have been placed around the community heralding this program and a video featuring Selectwomen Jen Tooker and Melissa Kane will be posted on social media to help get the word out.
European restaurants for years have given out blankets to patrons to keep them warm while eating alfresco in cooler climates. This initiative pivoted on that concept to address issues with COVID by having people bring their own blankets instead.
“It’s getting cooler out there and this is a way to keep people warm and still dining out,” said Matthew Mandell, the chamber’s executive director. “Many people are continuing to choose to eat outside and with the rollback to Phase 2.1 we are hoping this concept will be embraced and succeed.”
COVID cases have begun to spike in Connecticut and Governor Ned Lamont has issued a new executive order creating Phase 2.1, which rolls back from Phase 3. It decreases the indoor dining capacity from 75 percent to 50 percent, puts a maximum table seating at eight and requires restaurants to close dining at 9:30 p.m., though takeout and delivery are still allowed beyond that time. This order began Nov. 6.
Castlekeep Advisors sponsored this initiative and Miggs Burroughs once again designed the logo for the chamber. The video can be seen online on YouTube.
“One of the good things to come out of the 2020 pandemic experience is the expanded ability for Westport restaurants to offer outdoor dining, and Westport diners have responded with overwhelming enthusiasm,” said First Selectman Jim Marpe. “BYOB is a terrific way to ‘keep the party going’ through the winter months while supporting our great local restaurant scene.”
More information and a list of restaurants offering outdoor dining can be found at http://www.westportwestonchamber.com.