New Hampshire restaurant owner says he’d rather close than make employees, customers wear masks

Photo by Romulo Yanes/Condé Nast via Getty Images

No masks, no ice cream

A New Hampshire ice cream shop and restaurant shut down on Sunday after a customer reported them for not wearing masks or requiring diners to do so, the business announced on its Facebook page. And now, the owners refuse to open until they can operate the business the way they did pre-COVID-19. 

The owner of Roselynn Homemade Ice Cream Breakfast and Lunch, in Epping, N.H., would rather close down his business than adhere to state guidelines and enforce mask-wearing policies during the coronavirus pandemic. The restaurant said on its Facebook page it will open in the “near future,” but that could be a while with a second wave of the virus.

“What happened to live free or die,” a sign outside of the restaurant asks. 

A complaint was filed about the business with the attorney general’s office earlier this month, reporting that workers at the ice cream shop and restaurant were not wearing face masks while inside.


The restaurant’s owner Joe Bodge, however, argues that he shouldn’t have to police customers or staffers, who he claims cannot wear masks for health reasons, according to the Boston Globe.

“It should be their right to make that decision, just like it should be our right to decide not to wear a mask,” Bodge told the Boston Globe. “If they don’t feel safe or comfortable, they have the option to walk out.”

The restaurant’s Facebook page says it will continue serving ice cream through Oct. 30 or until they run out.

"Remember, you've got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything," the restaurant wrote in its Facebook post. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, currently recommends Americans wear masks to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

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