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Sevier Co. restaurant closes doors, lays off workers

3:47 AM, Jan 2, 2013   |    comments
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A Sevier County getaway has announced it has laid off some of its staff.

Christmas Place Properties owns both the Inn at Christmas Place and Partridge and Pear Restaurant in Pigeon Forge. The company told about 40 workers at Partridge and Pear they would lose their jobs on Monday.

Janet Donaldson, a marketing employee with Christmas Place Properties, said the restaurant was losing money. She told 10News it could not shake its reputation as a high-end restaurant to Sevier County visitors.

Donaldson said food at the restaurant cost considerably less at the time of its closure in comparison to when it first opened.

"We just did not get in the right fit that brought in the traffic that we needed," Donaldson said.

Darcy Tubb worked at the restaurant for 2 years. He said while he understands it was having financial issues, he wishes Christmas Place had been more forthcoming before letting its staff at the restaurant go.

"We were told we were only going to be closed for 7 days to do extensive deep cleaning and to revamp the menu," he said.

Tubb said he is concerned his co-workers, some of whom are single parents, will struggle to find new jobs in Sevier County as it currently the time of year where tourism slows down.

"It slows down considerably and if you don't have a job, it's very hard to get a job," he said.

Donaldson said Christmas Place Properties said it is going to do more evaluation on what step it will take next. She said it could even lease the restaurant property or open a new dining facility there in the future.

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