‘It’s a shocking time,’ says BCS business owner as bars are shuttered once again

Published: Jun. 26, 2020 at 8:59 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - How does Barry Ivins, owner of two bars and a restaurant in Bryan College Station, feel about Gov. Greg Abbott’s orders to close bars and limit restaurants to 50% capacity?

Ivins doesn’t know either.

“I don’t know, to be honest with you,” said Ivins, who owns Carney’s Pub and the Kyle House in Bryan and the Corner Bar in College Station. “Something has to be done to control this [pandemic].”

Still, Ivins says he is struggling with the sudden news Friday that closed bars.

“It’s a shocking time,” said Ivins. “The uncertainty—it’s a bit stressful. But you have to focus on the positives: we still have our health, where a lot of people don’t right now.”

Health, almost more than capacity restrictions, has made operating his businesses difficult, says Ivins.

“We haven’t had any positive cases yet, but we have lost staff member after staff member that their roommate has it or someone they’ve been around has,” Ivins said. “Each day has been a challenge: are we going to have enough staff to open up with people under quarantine?”

Now, Kyle House at 800 S. Bryan Avenue on the edge of Downtown Bryan, is the only of his businesses that remains open under the governor’s order. Currently, you can visit the coffee shop/eatery/bar Tuesday-Saturday, 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Kyle House is Ivins’ newest business, and one close to his heart.

“We have a lot of history here; my brother got married here and my rehearsal dinner was next door,” said Ivins. “It’s always been something that’s really important to us, so we decided to bring it back... It’s set up really good as a coffee house, and of course we still do events.”

The fluctuating situation with COVID-19 has arguably hit the bar and restaurant industry the hardest, and Ivins has been on the front lines. How does he deal with the “day-by-day adventure,” as he calls it?

This time, he has a clear answer.

“Beer,” said Ivins.

For the full conversation from First News at Four, see the video player.

Copyright 2020 KBTX. All rights reserved.

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