Coppell, Irving business owners share how they are coping with coronavirus fallout

Bruno Ceka opened Bruno's Ristorante in 1989, back when the Dallas Cowboys were still headquarted in Valley Ranch. (Gavin Pugh/Community Impact Newspaper)
Bruno Ceka opened Bruno's Ristorante in 1989, back when the Dallas Cowboys were still headquarted in Valley Ranch. (Gavin Pugh/Community Impact Newspaper)

Bruno Ceka opened Bruno's Ristorante in 1989, back when the Dallas Cowboys were still headquarted in Valley Ranch. (Gavin Pugh/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
Ginger Blazek opened Zenzero Kitchen & Bakery in 2012. (Lindsey Juarez Monsivais/Community Impact Newspaper)
Businesses in Coppell and Irving are grappling with how to remain afloat amid government orders to shutter most gathering spaces.

A sweeping executive order from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott limiting social gatherings will last from March 20-April 3. It will also prohibit eating and drinking at restaurants and bars while still allowing takeout; close gyms; ban people from visiting nursing homes, except for critical care; and temporarily close schools.

Here are how a few local business owners are reacting to the fallout from coronavirus concerns.

Zenzero Kitchen and Bakery owner Ginger Blazek is attempting to keep her business open as dining rooms are being forced to shutter across Dallas County.

Blazek said community support from Coppell residents has been encouraging.


"The thing that is blown my mind is how incredible this community is," Blazek said. "They've been coming in to just pick up orders to go or placing orders to go. And, you know, everybody is very concerned."

Blazek said that she plans to remain open by reducing the storefront's hours and limiting the staff that would normally manage the dining spaces. That is one of the advantages of owning your own business, she said.

"We're fortunate in that we have some flexibility, and we are able to be a little more limber and a little be able to react in the way that we want to react," Blazek said.

While Zenzero's dining space is closed, the kitchen and bakery is still providing curbside pickup as well as free delivery on orders $25 or more within the local radius.

The kitchen is also providing premade family meals, such as chicken pot pie, meat loaf and mashed potatoes.

Zenzero Kitchen and Bakery is located at 171 N. Denton Tap Road, Ste. 600, Coppell.

Longtime Valley Ranch restaurateur Bruno Ceka said he has had to lay off some staff as county officials are limiting restaurants' services.

"I already let my skeleton staff go, but the other people—I have to pay them," Ceka said. "They've been with me for 31 years. It will be very unprofessional to let them go, and I don't know if I'm going to get them back."

Ceka said the restrictions on restaurants' dining spaces could force him to close indefinitely.

"I'm just down to a delivery and pickup, and that's probably going to end by the end of the week because I don't think I can keep it open," Ceka said.

Though local governments continue to extend orders limiting where people can gather in public spaces, Ceka said he is ready and willing to comply with the decisions.

"We are 100% with the government and with city officials, and, you know, whatever they say, we will do it," he said.

Bruno's Ristorante is located at 9462 N. MacArthur Blvd., Irving.

As a local health care provider, Dr. Angela Moemeka of Mark9 Pediatrics said she has been fielding more questions from concerned parents.

"My four focus areas are around continuing with services, monitoring universal precautions and flattening the curve and then offering telemedicine services," Moemeka said.

"This is a 'put-your-mask-on-first' moment," Moemeka said. "You educate yourself, you check your anxiety level, and then, you act forward in terms of moving forward to protect yourself and protect those around you."

As a member of the Dallas County Medical Society, Moemeka said she has worked to stay informed on local efforts to curb the worst effects of the coronavirus.

"That's one of the great things about being part of the medical society and the medical community is if someone has found a really effective way to triage patients or to screen an individual to be able to do testing, we want to share that as soon as possible," she said.

The pediatric office is located at 165 SH 121, Ste. 110, Coppell.
By Gavin Pugh
Gavin has reported for Community Impact Newspaper since June 2017. His beat has included Dallas Area Rapid Transit, public and higher education, school and municipal governments and more. He now serves as the editor of the Grapevine, Colleyville, Southlake edition.


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