Then yesterday I saw some disturbing news. I am a "fan" of Claim Jumper on Facebook, and they had updated with a message about store closings. I saw that two locations in California had been closed, and I worried that ours may be on the chopping block too, as Claim Jumper is currently in a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. I scoured our local newspaper for some information, and found precious little about our local restaurant, so I asked my Facebook friends for more information.
Our Claim Jumper closed on December 13, 2010, the week before Jack's birthday (and, because every injury needs a little insult, on our anniversary, too!).
I have a few layers of upset going on here.
First, we had reservations. We were having out of town family and friends come in. And we never got a call about the restaurant closing. I found out only through research based on a Facebook post. I'm lucky to have found out at all. I imagine an awful lot of people who also have reservations for various days weren't so fortunate.
Second, that's a lot of people put out of work the week before Christmas. Shame on whatever powers-that-be that decided they couldn't make this work until the new year. I can't imagine that a restaurant who regularly had long waiting lines for dinner was hemorrhaging money.
Third, since before Thanksgiving, Claim Jumper has been advertising that they are open on Christmas and Christmas Eve, and it offered special menus of food for the holidays, encouraging families to spend their holiday at Claim Jumper. I bet a lot of people are going to be very disappointed when they show up on Christmas for a delicious meal to find a closed restaurant and no explanation.
Finally, it seems like every other restaurant on God's green earth closes at 4p.m. or earlier on Christmas Eve. It was beginning to look like we'd be eating Chinese food or visiting a deli for Jack's first birthday. The thought made me want to cry.
Fortunately, my husband found that one of our local favorites is open on Christmas Eve, and would be happy to accommodate our little party. It wasn't what I had imagined - Claim Jumper has a lot of good memories and significance for our little family - but it will be just fine.
I wish I could say the same for the Claim Jumper employees who find themselves out of a job right before the holidays.