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Court orders East Grand Forks restaurant to close after opening against COVID executive order

Polk County District Court granted a motion against Boardwalk Bar and Grill, which reopened on Wednesday.
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(Stock photo)

ST PAUL, Minn. — An East Grand Forks restaurant has been ordered to close and its liquor license has been suspended after opening Wednesday in defiance of Gov. Tim Walz's Executive Order 20-99, which "paused" in-person dining statewide until at least next week due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a news release on Sunday, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Alcohol and Gambling Enforcement division suspended the liquor license of Boardwalk Bar and Grill. 

On Friday, the Minnesota Attorney General's office announced that the Polk County District Court granted its motion to prohibit Boardwalk Bar and Grill from remaining open to the public. 

The restaurant opened Wednesday, following an announcement on its Facebook page.

"It is clear from the facts shown by the State that Defendant’s patrons and general public will suffer irreparable harm unless Defendant is temporarily enjoined from opening for on-premises dining in violation of Emergency Executive Order 20-99," the court wrote in its restraining order ruling.

The Attorney General's office has enforcement authority under the terms of the executive order.

“I’m grateful for the court’s quick action, because lives are at stake,” Attorney General Ellison said in a statement. “We look forward to pursuing our enforcement action to the fullest extent.”

The restaurant has not yet commented publicly on the court's ruling.

A hearing in the case is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 16.

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