Pittsylvania Co. restaurant gets another chance after closing for two years due to COVID

GRETNA, Va. (WFXR) — Two years after being forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic, C&E Restaurant is back open and ready to feed the Gretna community!

If you ask Carolyn Pritchett, the owner of the C&E restaurant, how she was able to reopen, she’ll tell you she’s blessed. With the support of her husband and small business loans, she was able to get things back on track after closing her door two years ago due to covid.

“We were very lucky not to have to sell the property,” Pritchett said.

Like almost all businesses, the Pritchett Restaurant was not prepared for a global pandemic that hit in 2020.

“Being a restaurant with an open buffet, all you can eat, was a no-no, she explained.

Even though the Gretna restaurant had been operating for more than 20 years, the pandemic changed everything. The health department visited and said the facility environment was not equipped to deal with COVID-19.

“It was devastating because you thought your income was going to be cut off. I mean, for how long? You don’t know,” Pritchett said.

Pritchett asked for pandemic assistance, but she says her husband provided all the financial support she needed.

“He’s been the backbone of it,” the restaurant owner said.

Pritchett knew the restaurant needed a makeover, so it’s now only open to drive-thru.

“You have to change where it’s necessary to change now, because this day and this time are no longer the same,” Pritchett said.

Even now, Pritchett understands that being open is still hard, so she remains humble. She says she has already seen stock outs and needs more drive-thru staff.

“We hope we can survive,” Pritchett told WFXR News. “That’s all I can say.”

Pritchett’s mother’s words – “you go rough to do it all” – say those words from her mother keep her going. that’s why all the food is also prepared from scratch.

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