David Fong

Restaurants remodel during pandemic

Sometimes it’s not the situation you are in so much as how you deal with it. During the change of business caused by COVID-19, some restaurants used the time to remodel. 

“It’s great to see Bloomington restaurants taking advantage of downtime to remodel and reset to better serve customers and the community,” Environmental Health Manager Lynn Moore said.

After 54 years in the same building and with service down to take-out only this spring, David Fong, at right, decided a remodel was in order for his restaurant. The project involved updating bars, plumbing, painting and more. During the work, a few vintage menus were discovered behind old cabinets. Maybe you recall ’60s-era cocktails at a cost of 80 cents to $1.75 for a plantation punch, Fong’s delight or zombie? How about two egg rolls for a dollar or chop suey for $1.45? Prices have changed over the years, but the tradition of hospitality remains.

At another Bloomington restaurant, requests for banquet services at Willy McCoy’s were growing before COVID-19. To accommodate future customer demand, the restaurant remodeled during the slowdown. New bathrooms and garage doors to the patio were added, and the upstairs bar was moved to create a more open and customer-friendly space. From the layout to the finishes, Willy McCoy’s has a new look.

“We love to be a part of this community,” Owner Korey Bannerman said. “Our customers are fantastic and we hope to be around for years to come.”