Poor air quality impacts local businesses and customers

[anvplayer video=”5180381″ station=”998131″]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – The air quality is impacting some local businesses along Park Avenue in Rochester, as well as their customers. However, they are trying to make the best of this.

Some saw business pick up and others saw a decline in outdoor dining.

“I don’t want to taste the smoke. I mean, I love being around a campfire, but not when it’s in the air,” Nancy Coons said.

It’s the countdown to summer and although Coons wants to dine outside at Dorado on Park Avenue, the poor air quality is interfering with her taste buds. So, she is playing it safe and dining indoors. The General Manager of Dorado, a Latin restaurant and tequila bar, was expecting business to be slower Tuesday, and was planning to send employees home early. However, he was surprised, outdoor seating was packed Tuesday evening, even with the poor air quality.

“Oddly enough, it hasn’t impacted us at all. As you can see, it’s been a great day here on Park Avenue. Everybody is out here enjoying their tacos and margaritas. I’m surprised it hasn’t affected us at all, if anything it’s a busier than a normal afternoon for us,” Desin said.

Many customers enjoyed a variety of tacos, Latin dishes, and margaritas outside. The poor air quality and the haze of smoke, was not a major factor for them.

“It’s not bothering me too much, but early today when I went outside to get the mail, you could smell it and see the haze. It was bad,” Sharon Magro said.

It was all about the good food and drinks for many customers and they were unbothered by the effects of the air quality.  

“It’s hazy, it smells like a campfire, so I’m okay with it. A little tequila takes care of that,” Cindy Parker said.

Outdoor dining was not popular today at The Red Fern, a vegan restaurant down the street on Oxford. No one was dining outside. However, most of the tables indoors were filled with customers having dinner and dessert.

“We have way less outdoor seating today, than indoor seating. It’s something that’s different. We have way more people inside,” Assistant Manager, Joseph Allmond said.

Down the street, another restaurant had a full house inside, but only two customers dining outside. One of those customers attended Councilmember Mary Lupien’s fundraising event prior to dinner and asked her husband to pick her up. She walked to the event, but the air quality was so bad she couldn’t walk to the restaurant due to her pulmonary condition. However, she couldn’t resist eating outdoors.

“It’s lively and it seems like it’s a little bit better,” Nina Gaby said.