PHOTOS: Downtown Loveland busy as bars/restaurants allowed to partially reopen

Many express relief to be able to be in public again and enjoy dining/drinking experiences

BY JOE WESSELS
Loveland Local News

LOVELAND, Ohio — They could barely contain their excitement.

“Freedom!” said Tammy Coffey, who, along with her husband, Matt, were two of the first people to utilize outdoor dining at Ramsey’s Trailside in downtown Loveland Friday. The couple both agreed they were tired of sitting at home and not being able to be out and about in the town they love.

“This was a brilliant thing done by the Loveland City Council,” said Matt Coffey, referring to the Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area, or DORA, which is a state law that allows for alcoholic drinks to be carried openly within a specific area if a local government approves of it. Loveland City Council approved the measure last year, but amended the city’s ordinance at its April 28 virtual meeting to allow for a 60-day continual DORA, as opposed to the event-specific version passed last year and this year.

Many said they were not oblivious to the pandemic still going on around them, ravaging some parts of the country. They have just taken precautions, said Susan Reutelschofer, who, along with her husband, son and a family friend enjoyed libations on the Bishop’s Quarter lower patio.

Couple enjoys drinks on outside patio at Ramsey's Trailside
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News Tammy and Matt Coffey, of Loveland, enjoy a beer shortly after outdoor dining was permitted on Friday, May 15, 2020. What brought them? “Freedom!” Tammy exclaimed. “This was a brilliant thing done by the Loveland City Council,” Matt added, referring to the 60-consecutive-day DORA open-air alcohol district in downtown Loveland. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed to re-open for outdoor seating only.
Drone image of downtown Loveland restaurant area
After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only. Drone image of main downtown entertainment/dining area.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
People order food at Ramsey's Trailside.
Downtown-goers line up to order food at Ramsey’s Trailside in downtown Loveland. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
assistant general manager and two women talk
Stacy Lampe (middle), Bishop’s Quarter’s assistant general manager, said her establishment was “about as crowded as we expected.” She said patrons were not allowed to stand around and everyone had to have a table to sit. “I think the hardest part is going to be crowd control,” she said. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
couple enjoys beer on Bishop's Quarter rooftop
Carrie Shomber, left, and Aaron Price enjoy a beer on the Bishop’s Quarter rooftop. “I took off early to have a beer,” Shomber said, who is working from home during the quarantine. She works in healthcare, but not in a frontline capacity. “It’s nice to finally be able to be out,” Price added, who is a manufacturing manager. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
seating on Bishop's Quarter balcony
Crowds were steady in the evening at Bishop’s Quarter in downtown Loveland. Here the crowd sits at tables on the west balcony. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
family enjoys outdoor patio at Bishop's Quarter
Todd Reutelschofer, left in sunglasses, and his wife, Susan (with beer cup), enjoy a laugh with family friend Drew Steinbreunner (seated) on the Bishop’s Quarter patio. Ben Reutelschofer was also with them. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
cleaning tables
A server cleans off a table on the Bishop’s Quarter rooftop on the first day back with outdoor dining. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
do not congregate sign on sidewalk
After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
server turned host stands in Tano doorway
Kelsy Burke, normally a Tano Bistro server, is working as a host in the restaurant’s doorway, directing visitors to the venue’s rooftop bar. She said she didn’t mind working as a host for the time being, but is looking forward to serving again soon. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
two men walk with DORA cups along West Loveland Avenue
two men walk with DORA cups along West Loveland Avenue After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
DORA cups facilitated drink potability
Couple walks along the Little Miami Scenic Trail with DORA cups from the city of Loveland. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
dogs check each other out on trail
Dogs sniff each other out along the bike trail in downtown Loveland, Ohio. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
men standing around drinking
A group of men stand around with Loveland DORA cups near the Loveland bike trail. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
crowd on bike trail
The crowd gets larger as the evening falls in downtown Loveland on the first day of re-opening for outdoor dining. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
group enjoys drinks in adirondack chairs near bike trail
Crowds were happy to be able to be out in public legally again. Here a group sits in adirondack chairs on a city-owned concrete slab next to the Little Miami Scenic Trail in downtown Loveland. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
Lyles BBQ owner mans front entrance
Lyle Westerfield, owner of Lyle’s Bikes, Brews & BBQ on Railroad Avenue next to the Little Miami Scenic Trail in downtown Loveland, works the entrance to his establishment, wearing a mask. Server Lindsey Watters stands nearby, awaiting more customers. Westerfield said he had to move tables so far apart in reduced his seating to about half his normal capacity. Regardless, he was happy to be back in business with customers eating on his property. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
lyle's rush
As the evening got later, the crowd picked up at Lyle’s Bikes, Brews & BBQ on Railroad Avenue in downtown Loveland along the bike trail. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
couple drinks beer outside
Cody Joel, left, and Emma Toal-Lennon, both of Brooklyn, New York, had beers together at Lyle’s Bikes, Brews and BBQ outdoor garden Friday, May 15, 2020. The couple have been visiting Joel’s mother who moved to Loveland recently “for several weeks” to escape the coronavirus pandemic in New York City and surrounding areas. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
couple walks along trail with DORA cups
A couple walks along Loveland bike trail with DORA cups and beer cups. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
narrow path bier garten
Narrow Path Brewing Company added several picnic tables this week to their back area they are converting to bier garten, said Brian Lindsey, a Hamilton Township resident, frequent downtown Loveland visitor and “unofficial” worker at the establishment. “I own the bathrooms,” he said, suggesting he cleans them. He added that he and others assembled the picnic tables during the week to get ready for Friday’s outdoor re-opening. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
Joe Wessels/Loveland Local News
brian lindsay gives the sign of peace
Brian Lindsay may live in Hamilton Township, but his heart is in downtown Loveland. After the state-imposed coronavirus shutdown, restaurants and bars in downtown Loveland were allowed re-open for outdoor seating only.
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Joe Wessels
About Joe Wessels 55 Articles
Long-time and award-winning Cincinnati-area journalist, radio show host, Podcast producer and photographer Joe Wessels is the founder and editor (and kinda the do-everything guy) of Loveland Local News. Previously, Wessels was the Cincinnati City Hall and Hamilton County reporter for The Cincinnati Post and a weekly columnist for Cincinnati CityBeat where he regularly broke news. Wessels moved to Loveland in 2014 and quickly realized Loveland would be a great place to fulfill his dream of creating his own online news and information publication.