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Outdoor dining during Toledo winter? Igloos -- yes, igloos -- could make it happen

Blarney Irish Pub is hoping its 8-person heated igloos will attract customers in the colder months.
Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 5:43 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - As COVID-19 restrictions continue, restaurants are trying to make it work. From closures to carry-out only options and now dining room modifications, businesses are getting creative to attract customers.

This summer, the biggest draw for diners is outdoor patios. Many bars and restaurants have added outdoor dining spaces and others have extended existing spaces, with the idea of bringing in more business. As temperatures start to drop, dining under the stars is not going to be possible.

The Blarney Irish Pub in downtown Toledo is adding igloos this winter, giving diners a chance to enjoy a socially distant drink or dinner while still staying “outside.” The igloos will seat up to 8 people and will be heated.

“We’ve actually purchased 4 igloos, they are on backorder," says Bill Kline, the managing partner with The Blarney Irish Pub. "Hopefully, middle of October is when we are going to get them and we will put two on the event center side, 2 on the Blarney side and hopefully put some in the street if it goes as well as it will.”

Kline says profits for the downtown business are stable and the company is doing everything it can to stay ahead of the game during these uncertain times.

Metroparks Toledo featured igloos at Wildwood Metropark last summer for private dinners and they were extremely popular. Kline says he is hopeful people will take advantage of the idea downtown, giving people something to look forward to as winter arrives.

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