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Editorial: Closing of RJ's Tavern is a blow to Hastings

For the most part, businesses in downtown Hastings were able to get through the past three years of bridge construction unscathed.

We’re sure it wasn’t the best recipe for success — construction was everywhere, roads were torn up and streets were closed off and on throughout the project.

Most established businesses, though, made it through all the construction.

We were reminded on Tuesday, though, that the work has taken its toll when we learned of the closing of RJ’s Tavern on Main.

Of course, the bridge work isn’t the only factor at play here. There was an exhaustive remodeling job and the downturn in the economy hit at about the same time.

The closing of the long-standing establishment is a blow to Hastings because it takes with it a lot of history. Just after the closing was announced, we watched on Facebook as news spread and heard testimonials from people who frequented RJ’s. They may have worked there, or may have met their significant other there. They may have spent a 50th birthday party there, or a fun New Year’s Eve.

Hastings has other restaurants for people to go to. There are plenty of places here, and nobody will starve because RJ’s is out of business. The real blow instead comes from the fact thathe space for so many fond memories is now behind locked doors.