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A Bethel restaurant that defied state orders by opening its doors to diners on Friday announced plans to reopen on Tuesday, which would again violate Gov. Janet Mills’ coronavirus restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.
A posting on the Sunday River Brewing Company Facebook page Monday said simply, “The plan is to open tomorrow at 11 a.m. See you then.”
Co-owner Rick Savage opened the restaurant on Friday, drawing more than 150 customers, in a deliberate act of disobedience that appeared to be the clearest example yet of tensions boiling over in Maine about the pandemic restrictions.
Savage has said that he was protesting inconsistencies in a March order from Mills that barred dine-in restaurant service. He said that the order favored big businesses and hurt smaller operators such as himself and that he wanted to keep himself and his 65 workers employed.
As a result of the protest, he lost his state health and liquor licenses, he said. His liquor license was suspended automatically when the restaurant license was pulled.
Restaurants must obtain state health licenses to legally serve food.
Savage, who announced the Friday reopening the night before on Fox News, hammered a plan from the Democratic governor that was released Tuesday to allow certain businesses to reopen on Friday while leaving restaurants closed to dine-in customers until June.
Watch: Janet Mills outlines her plan to reopen