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story.lead_photo.caption Emma Tye, left, and Chuck Taramona have fun while serving up coffee and tea to their customers Tuesday at Brewsters on the Boulevard in Texarkana, Texas. The coffee shop was closed for about a week to make sure the place was safe after an employee tested positive for COVID-19. Both the workers and their customers were excited and grateful when Brewsters reopened its doors this week. Photo by Junius Stone / Texarkana Gazette.

Benchmark American Brasserie and Brewsters on the Boulevard have reopened after each recently dealing with an employee testing positive for COVID-19.

Disinfecting and the safety of the customers and the crew are top priority.

"We shut down on July 2 and took a 20-day break," said Jason K. Williams, owner of Benchmark American Brasserie. "During the break, the affected staff was quarantined for two weeks. The employee who tested positive has been pronounced clear by medical officials."

The restaurant stayed closed to all other than someone to water the plants that accessed the premises.

"We then had a professional sanitizing team came in and fogged the place," he said. "As of Tuesday, we are now reopened. The entire staff has checked out healthy and we are ready to serve our customers."

Brewsters on the Boulevard had its own case of an employee testing positive. Though circumstances did not require a shutdown, they did it for a week anyway.

"We just wanted to make sure the space was safe for our workers as well as our customers," said Chuck Taramona, manager. "Now, we have hand sanitizer in, had the place disinfected, and now our customers and staff have a safe place to work and enjoy what we do. We are back in business and business is booming."

In both the cases, the employees who tested positive have come through fine and are healthy.

Benchmark American Brasserie is located at 4115 N. Kings Highway #111. Brewsters on the Boulevard is at 4303 Texas Blvd.

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