After being in the spotlight for defying COVID-19 protocols, Adam Skelly, owner of Adamson Barbecue, has decided to close all three restaurants.
Skelly told The Star that he sees “no end in sight that does not involve discrimination against any segment of society.”
“So I decided to close all the sites,” he said.
Skelly says he doesn’t want to comply with the province’s mandatory vaccine certificate, but is also unable to object due to his bail conditions – hence his shutdown. Etobicoke restaurant on Queen Elizabeth Blvd., Leaside location on Wicksteed Ave. and the location at Aurora.
“I would protest them, but I am bound by bail conditions and a court order to obey Ontario’s Reopening Act,” he said of passport warrants vaccine.
Last year, in November, when the province imposed tougher measures on businesses as COVID-19 cases continued to skyrocket, Skelly’s Etobicoke site broke those rules by allowing customers to dine indoors after taking to social media to publicly announce his challenge.
“Our Etobicoke branch (…) will be opening for restaurant meals against provincial orders,” Skelly said in an Instagram video posted Nov. 23 to the restaurant’s account.
At the time, only delivery, drive-thru, and take-out were allowed in restaurants.
Although the police were on site as Skelly greeted a long line of customers in the restaurant, they did not prevent them from entering. An order was issued later today by Toronto Public Health to close the facility.
The next day, the restaurant reopened its doors, defying health orders a second time. Toronto Public Health eventually took possession of the location and locked its front door with a padlock.
Over the two days, Skelly was charged a total of nine times with rule violations, including breaking a rule prohibiting indoor dining. Two of the charges were also laid for operating without a business license.
In a Star Exclusive, it was later revealed that Skelly’s original Adamson Barbecue location in Leaside had been operating without a commercial license for over four years.
In February, Skelly was billed $ 187,000 by the city of Toronto as she tried to “recoup her costs to enforce provincial public health regulations” spent when the restaurant closed.
The majority of the bill was attributed to the cost of police staffing, but Skelly was also billed for public health and licensing staff, boarding premises, and the cost of a locksmith.
The court ultimately restricted Skelly’s access to social media, but the ban was partially lifted in January.
With the closure of the controversial restaurant chain, the equipment is now being auctioned off by Benaco Sales LTD – along with other content from 16 other establishments.