LISTEN: Hard hit by government closures and consumer fears of exposure to COVID-19, restaurants are on the brink

Fletcher’s, one of the restaurants at the Hotel Captain Cook in Anchorage, is closed to dine-in service but continues to offer take-out. (Tegan Hanlon/Alaska Public Media)

Bars and restaurants are once again closed to indoor drinking and dining in Anchorage, but some restaurant owners say they can’t afford another shutdown, and will defy the order and stay open. Other hospitality businesses across the state say they’re also hurting from reduced capacity and a lack of summer tourists. Some will close permanently. So what’s the best answer to keep people safe and keep businesses whole?

HOST: Lori Townsend

  • Josh Tobin, general manager, Alice’s Champagne Restaurant
  • Sarah Oates, President & CEO, Alaska Cabaret, Hotel, Restaurant and Retailers Association (CHARR)
  • Travis Smith, owner, The Rookery Cafe & Bocca Al Lupo


Call 550-8422 (Anchorage) or 1-800-478-8255 (statewide) during the live broadcast.

Send an email to (comments may be read on air).

Post your comment before, during or after the live broadcast (comments may be read on air).

LIVE Broadcast: Tuesday, Aug 11, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. on APRN stations statewide.
LIVE Web stream: Click here to stream.

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Lori Townsend is the News Director for Alaska Public Media. She has worked in print and broadcast journalism for nearly 30 years. Radio brought her to Alaska, where she worked as a broadcast trainer for Native fellowship students at Koahnic Broadcasting before accepting a reporting/host position with APRN in 2003. APRN merged with Alaska Public Media a year later. Through her freelance work, she has produced news and feature stories nationally and internationally for Independent Native News, National Native News, NPR , Pacifica, Monitor Radio, Radio Netherlands and AIROS. Townsend is the recipient of numerous awards for her work from the Alaska Press Club, the Native American Journalists Association and a gold and a silver reel award from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. 

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