Volume No. 17 Issue No. 5 May 2020  

  Rush Café steps up to the plate
  By Lindsey Harrison

     On March 16, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment issued a public health order banning restaurants from serving food and drinks onsite because of the coronavirus pandemic. Two days prior to the announcement, Jason Rush, new owner of Rush Café in Rush, Colorado, celebrated his new restaurant’s grand opening.
   As a transplant to Rush from Spokane, Washington, via his parents’ house in Falcon, Rush said he has been in the food industry for a long time and knew as soon as he saw the Rush Café that he would own it one day. In February, Rush said he bought the café and began the process of getting the restaurant up and running.
   The first few days the restaurant was open, the place was packed, Rush said. However, he said the onset of COVID-19 dramatically changed his plans, and the café quickly became a vital part of the community for more than just the food.
   Rush residents were posting various items they needed on a community Facebook page because those items either were not locally available or were sold out online, Rush said. He said he realized he could purchase the items from his vendors and have the residents reimburse him.
   “I read on Facebook that someone was looking for flour,” Rush said. “People were telling me they needed things, and I said to let me know what they needed and I would get it on my (delivery) truck. I started getting blown up left and right. Every time I got a new message (of an item someone needed), I would just add it to my list.”
   Rush said he found another distributor who had access to paper products like toilet paper and paper towels, and he purchased those for residents as the need was communicated to him. He bought the items at wholesale prices and sold them to the community members who ordered them at the same cost, he has not made any profit from the arrangement.
   The food has always been his No. 1 priority, and Rush said he has stayed busy cooking his mom and pop style food, working 14 to 15 hour days, six days per week. For now, the Rush Cafe is open only for takeout and delivery service.
   “The community is supporting me and people are loving my food,” he said. The food is fresh, the prices are affordable and everything has a lot of flavor, Rush said. People have started requesting his signature roasted pepper aioli as a dipping sauce, and he said he plans to have four other signature sauces available for customers to purchase.
   Rush said he is prepared to stay in Rush and run the café until he retires.
   “I have done the big city thing,” he said. “I am most likely going to retire here in Colorado.”
   Hours of operation: Monday — closed; Tuesday through Sunday – 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Once the restrictions are lifted, the hours will extend to 8 a.m. 8 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.
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