Hailey Colwell Position: Server and front of house Years in the industry: 1 Sea Salt Eatery, Minneapolis So, we have a pretty big patio and a lot of lines ... and we’re right next to Minnehaha Falls ... so people will leave their table number sitting at a random table while their food is being prepped and then leave to go check out the falls. Which as you can imagine leads to a ton of problems—other guests will snag their tables or food runners will be unable to find them—it gets crazy.
Grace Sullivan Position: Front of house Years in the industry: 3 Glam Doll Donuts, Minneapolis The mess. People will leave it super messy. We're a self-serve restaurant, but people will still leave random garbage and food lying around. It can build up too because our patio is located behind us, so it can take a bit before someone is able to go out there and check on it.
Tom Pane Position: Bartender Years in the industry: 7 Psycho Suzie’s Motor Lounge, Minneapolis Really when people move stuff around and push tables together—we used to have a guy who worked here who would say to people, ‘I don’t come into your living room and push around your furniture’.
Ben Spencer Position: Bartender and server Years in the industry: 7 French Hen Cafe, St. Paul We have two patios, one in the back and one in front and balancing service between the two can get tricky. I would also say people are more apt to sit down at a patio table at any time rather than seeing the host. There have been multiple times where I've been running between the patios and will have no idea that there are new guests because of that.
Tom Garry Position: Senior barista Years in the industry: 8 J&S Bean Factory, St. Paul Well because we are a coffee shop, we offer free WiFi. But, if we neglect to turn it off at night, people will sit out on the patio in the evenings and use it illicitly. People will also just come hang out on our patio at night because it's big and comfortable but not secured.