News of the restaurant’s closure came as no surprise. Boebert had told reporters in June that the new owners of the building decided not to renew its lease. Folders of Garfield County, where Rifle is located, say the building that housed Shooters was sold on May 26, two days after a school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, where 19 children and two adults were killed.
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The closing was the same day Boebert went on Fox News and said, “When 9/11 happened, we didn’t ban planes, we secured the cockpit.” The new owner, a company called Milkin Enterprises, shares an address with another local business, the Green Cross Recreational Dispensarywho sells a wide line of flowers, edibles, cartridges and other THC and CBD products.
Milkin Enterprises owners Mike Miller and Dan Meskin didn’t offer many clues as to why they kicked off Boebert and Shooters Grill. They declined interviews. The Washington Post called the Rifle dispensary (and its sister location in Silt, Colorado) looking for the owners. The Post also emailed an account for Meskin found in the public records. Neither Miller nor Meskin responded.
But when news of Shooters Grill’s potential closure broke, the Reported Daily Beast that a “person familiar with the arrangement said the property manager felt he had a ‘moral’ imperative to close the business.” The same story also indicated that Boebert dismissed the idea that the new owners, one of whom is the son of the previous owner, were politically motivated to shut down his business. Boebert’s office did not respond to a message seeking comment on the shutdown.
Whatever the reason, the Western restaurant has flown into the sunset after a nearly 10-year run.
“We were like family,” Boebert told Erku with the Post Independent. “I would say Shooters, for any employee, was his life. We lived and breathed it every day. They were part of this culture and this brand that we created in Rifle, and there was a lot of pride with that.
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Shooters opened in 2013 in a location across from the current one. The grill looked like a saloon straight out of the center molding. The floors were hardwood, the walls decorated with guns, knotty pine wood, a cross, pro-gun signs and American flags, including one with the Pledge of Allegiance printed on it. A sign was placed in the front window advertising the restaurant’s position on the open portage and positioning itself as a safe place for the MAGA crowd.
“ATTENTION”, the sign read in capital letters, “THIS IS NOT A GUN FREE ZONE.
A scroll through photos from the restaurant’s Yelp page proves it: Many customers took photos inside the dining room or outside the grill, their hands hovering over a gun strapped to their hip, as if ready for a quick draw. The waiters, often young women in T-shirts and denim shorts, also carried guns, which likely explains why many reporters dubbed Shooters Grill a Hooters parody for Second Amendment diehards.
Its menu borrowed the language of gunsmiths, the National Rifle Association, and Central America, often turning words into food-related puns. The restaurant sold Guac Nine and Swiss & Wesson burgers. He offered a Ruger Reuben. Appetizers were listed under “Target practice”. The kids menu was dubbed Lil Slingers. There was a prayer to “Father God” at the bottom of the menu.
The message of God and guns would continue into Boebert’s political career when she was elected to Congress in 2020. She has been a strong advocate for gun ownership, rejecting any calls for bans or to controls, even after mass shootings. When she began her first term in the House, Boebert said she would carry her Glock pistol on Capitol grounds and in Washington, even though DC gun laws do not recognize concealed carry licenses. other states.
She caused a stir last month at a church service in Colorado when she said, “I’m sick of this separation of church and state that’s not in the Constitution. It was in a stinky letter, and it doesn’t mean anything they say. Experts have called his interpretation of the Constitution false and “dangerous”.
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A photo on the company’s Yelp page shows a plaque which was dedicated to the opening of Shooters Grill on May 22, 2013. It features a quote from Proverbsin a script mixing cursive and all capitals: “Command your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”
Shooters, however, struggled during its existence. According a public disclosure statement filed by Boebert, Shooters lost more than $242,000 in 2018. The Daily Beast reported that public disclosures indicated that Shooters lost “more than $600,000 in total between 2018 and 2020.” The restaurant had also accrued nearly $20,000 in unpaid unemployment insurance premiums, which Boebert would have paid days before the 2020 general election. Shooters too would have sickened dozens of people at a rodeo with his pork burgers.
Despite the struggles and the fact that she easily won her Republican primary in June, Boebert did not give up on Shooters. She told the Post Independent that she and her husband, Jayson, have been praying for the future of the business.
“We would scale it down significantly, because obviously we’re not in our building,” she told the publication. “It may look like a Shooters cafe with pastries and sandwiches and easy breakfast wares.”