Camp Fire and pandemic precautions make running restaurant a challenge

The Old Barn Restaurant had only been open seven weeks when the Camp Fire destroyed their business. They moved to Chico, and now are facing new and unexpected challenges.

Posted: Jul 12, 2020 2:51 PM
Updated: Jul 12, 2020 3:21 PM

CHICO, Calif. - First they went through the devastating Camp Fire, and now they are trying to keep their business afloat in Chico during all the pandemic-relation precautions.

Chrystal Axelsson is the owner of the Old Barn Kitchen. She had taken over a Paradise restaurant, gave it the new name, and was only in business for seven weeks when the Camp Fire destroyed her business.

Axelsson said even though she thought at first her restaurant had burned up, it did not. But the damage was severe. She decided to reopen in Chico.

Things were going great, she said, until the pandemic hit. Now she says with cases rising they talk every day about whether they should close their dining room or keep it open.

She says for now they are following all safety guidelines and making plans in case they face any future restrictions. She told Action News Now reporter Kristian Lopez that they are preparing so customers can order on Instagram and Yelp for both takeout and delivery.

Axelsson also said there is a great community of restaurant owners in Chico that are working together every day to keep each other apprised of changes and concerns. She said there is a new unity that is bringing businesses together -- while staying apart.

The new Old Barn Kitchen is located on Main Street in downtown Chico.

Here is a picture of the previous restaurant on Clark Road in Paradise.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 578946

Reported Deaths: 10523
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles2108744999
Riverside41983820
Orange40527724
San Bernardino36072546
San Diego32975594
Kern24995183
Fresno17846171
San Joaquin13870235
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Sonoma375350
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San Luis Obispo227817
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Santa Cruz12876
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Del Norte1000
Mariposa622
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Modoc50
Trinity50
Sierra40
Alpine20
Unassigned00
Chico
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 97° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 72°
Oroville
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 99° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 70°
Paradise
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 72°
Chester
Clear
60° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 60°
Red Bluff
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 98° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 72°
Willows
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 100° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 72°
It wasn't as hot for northern California today, but temperatures still reached seasonable summer levels and more thunderstorms sprung over our eastern counties. After one more seasonable day, hotter weather will return to our area.
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