It's been a year since COVID-19 started serving up massive junk punches to our local businesses. Restaurants, bars, and breweries were hit especially hard after social distancing and various other quarantine measures were put into place. When it came to businesses.....if your livelihood depended on customers, you felt the effects - KettleHouse even ended up closing their Northside location for good.

Back in October, citing where Montana stood with the increase in daily COVID-19 numbers, Imagine Nation Brewing announced they were closing up shop for the rest of 2020 and their building would remain closed through the winter. They've continued to offer curbside orders but it seems some customers are getting a bit restless when it comes to Imagine Nation still being closed. They posted to Facebook in early march that they had over a dozen people hassle their staff about not having the patio open yet. At the time, Imagine Nation mentioned that the city would be cleaning trees along their property and it would make it unsafe to sit outside. They had a few staff members recovering from COVID-19 and it had left them short-handed to try and offer additional services.

But here we are, officially into spring, and it looks like things are ready to roll again as a Facebook post today says Imagine Nation will open up the patio on April 10.

In another sign pointing to things starting to feel a bit more normal again - over at Draught Works they've reopened their bar service, opened patio and bar seating, and returned to their normal hours of operation. Their Facebook post says it's just baby steps.....but man, these baby steps sure do feel like giant trampoline jumps after the last year we've all had.

Have you been to Draught Works for a beverage on the patio yet? Are you excited to stop by Imagine Nation Brewing and sip a cold one by the river? What other spot in Missoula are you most excited to see return to business as usual?

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