Boonville casino closure affects downtown business
BOONVILLE – April Trigg, a waitress at Main Street Diner in Boonville, said the restaurant is struggling to keep the doors open.
“It’s already noon and we’ve only had five people,” Trigg said.
Gov. Mike Parson tweeted Tuesday that he along with the chairman of the gaming commission ordered all state casinos to close at midnight through March 30, 2020 to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Isle of Capri Casino in Boonville closed its doors early at midnight and the hotel is slowly clearing out. Trigg said this is a disaster for her and Main Street Diner.
“The casino sends people over here for breakfast,” Trigg said. “I don’t know what I’m going to do. I don’t know what the business is going to do. We find out Friday if we have to close.”
Boonville Councilman Brent Bozarth said he sees the strain put on local businesses.
“There are just less and less people out now,” Bozarth said. “This is definitely a problem. Everything is really stressed out right now.”
Bozarth and Trigg agree that this situation puts a hardship on the entire community. Trigg said Main Street Diner’s business has dropped 90% over the last week. Trigg said she is concerned with how she will pay her bills.
“I have water and rent to pay,” Trigg said. “If I am out of a job, will I get assistance? I really don’t know what will happen at this point.”
Trigg said the community is seeing the hardship put on local employees. She said her regulars are being extra generous right now.
“We will get tipped a little extra which really means a lot to us,” Trigg said.