Moody’s Diner closed Thursday, April 22 and will remain closed through May 2 due to a positive COVID-19 test.
In a statement on its Facebook page and website Thursday evening, the Waldoboro restaurant said that a staff member tested positive and management is “erring on the side of caution” by closing the restaurant.
Dan Beck, co-owner and general manager, said word of the positive test arrived near the end of the day Thursday. He said the decision to close was “pretty immediate.” Management notified staff and closed the doors within an hour.
Based on a definition of close contact as someone who spends 15 minutes or more within 6 feet of someone with COVID-19, four to five employees have been asked to quarantine, according to Beck. He said the diner does not have enough manpower to stay open without them.
Moody’s has contact tracing in place, but Beck said no customers were in contact with the staff members in question.
This is the first time Moody’s has had to close due to COVID-19 exposure.
Beck said an unfortunate result of the closure is that Moody’s annual Founder’s Day event, already postponed from its traditional date of Feb. 8, will need to be postponed again, maybe even until 2022.
Founder’s Day celebrates the birthday of Percy Moody, who established the diner. The annual celebration typically includes four days of deals and giveaways as a thank you to the regulars who support the restaurant year-round. The event has been a tradition for the last 14 years.
Founder’s Day was moved from February because of the 50-person limit on gatherings due to COVID-19 that was in effect. In April, the restaurant was able to plan for 65% capacity and Beck felt it could handle the influx of business.
“For us, this is our first real exposure — it could have been a lot worse,” Beck said.