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Ruby Tuesday in Cottage Grove closes

The Cottage Grove restaurant closed Aug. 16. (Bulletin photo by William Loeffler)

Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday.

The Cottage Grove restaurant conducted its final day of business last Tuesday, of all days. That's also when employees were informed by a visiting regional manager that they were shutting down, according to a part-time dishwasher and salad bar worker.
Brandon Krech said he was one of the last to know. He found out when he reported to work Wednesday, Aug. 17.

“Today would have been my third day,” he said. “If I was here for a couple of years, hell yeah, I’d be mad.”

Krech, 21, of Cottage Grove took the news in stride. He and his girlfriend are expecting a daughter in December, but he said they're on good financial footing.

The Tennessee-based restaurant chain announced Aug. 11 that it planned to shutter 95 of its 274 locations by September. The announcement came after a fourth quarter report that showed a total revenue decline of 5.9 percent.

“The decision to close our Cottage Grove Ruby Tuesday restaurant was not made lightly given the impact to our cherished team members,” the company said in a statement. “However, we believe it is a necessary step to improve the health and profitability of the company and best position Ruby Tuesday for success. We will offer full-time and part-time employees impacted by the closures positions in nearby restaurants where possible. In cases where relocation is not possible, severance and benefits will be made available in accordance with our company policy.  We greatly appreciate the dedicated service of our team members and the patronage of the many residents and guests that have dined at our Cottage Grove Ruby Tuesday restaurant over the years.”

Christine Costello, economic development director for the city of Cottage Grove, said she spoke with the manager of Ruby Tuesday several days before the closure. She said that he assured her that the Cottage Grove location was doing well.

"It's sad to see it close," Costello said. "I've reached out to additional developers in the restaurant industry to tell them we now have a space available."

Last Wednesday, employees could be seen carrying out boxes and bags from the restaurant. A man who was supervising the move would not comment and referred questions to the corporate office.

Ruby Tuesday restaurants remain open in Inver Grove Heights, Roseville, Edina and Shakopee.

William Loeffler

William Loeffler is a playwright and journalist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He worked 15 years writing features for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has also written travel stories based on his trips to all seven continents. He and his wife, Michelle, ran the Boston Marathon in 2009. 

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