Holland leaders deny responsibility f...

Holland leaders deny responsibility for closed restaurant

There are 9 comments on the WZZM Grand Rapids story from Sep 5, 2007, titled Holland leaders deny responsibility for closed restaurant. In it, WZZM Grand Rapids reports that:

Holland- Holland leaders accused the owner of the Boatwerks restaurant of staging a publicity stunt.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at WZZM Grand Rapids.

Pete

Grand Haven, MI

#1 Sep 5, 2007
The general public doesn't care who's to blame, we just want to go there to eat. both sides need to stop being childish, you're embarrassing yourselves.
Pete

Grand Haven, MI

#2 Sep 5, 2007
Another thing, the 75.00 gift card in my wallet? If the restaurant doesn't reopen soon, will go to Butch's.

“Personal responsibility is key”

Since: Aug 07

West Michigan

#3 Sep 5, 2007
I will agree with the city leaders here. There was no talk of the city shutting them down prior to this.

The owner either got sick of fighting with the city or as the article says, is looking for publicity &/or symapthy.

Well, he gets no sympathy from me. There is no excuse, as a 'professional'(and I use that term loosely) business owner to lock your doors and not inform ANY of your employees. Then to top it off, he goes on vacation/flees town to avoid the situation he created.

This should be a HUGE sign to his current (well, now past) employeees and any future employees to steer clear of working for this man. He could care less about them, obviously.
Beth

Portage, MI

#4 Sep 5, 2007
Definitely looks like a publicity stunt to me! What a crappy way to treat your customers and employees.

Nice restaurant but the owner should remember that you can't get too high and mighty on yourself.....remember The Hatch and Point West? Notice neither of those is even standing anymore....
Shawna Groendal

Hudsonville, MI

#5 Sep 5, 2007
I am an employee of Boatwerks and he did not FLEE, he's here right now. No one really knows the facts... There are ALOT of facts about this case that are not being talked about. Joe is one of the few buisness owners that is standing up for himself and his buisness... He paid for the walkway that is gated off, not the city, it's his property and it's beautiful... I'm not here to point fingers at anyone, but I do know that Joe wouldn't have done this to all of us unless he had good reason and I have faith in his reasoning. Both sides are to blame for this and I know that this isn't the first time the city has had issues with a strong buisness owner... And honestly, so what if we parked in an empty space and some times we were so busy that guests would use the EMPTY docks, SO WHAT!!! This restaurant brings in people from all over michigan, it's beautiful! It's only bringing money into our community, his property is no longer an eye sore and boaters come from all around... will a public walkway do all that for our community?? I don't think so!! I may or may not get my job back, but if those doors re-open, I'll be there in my uniform ready to work!!

“Personal responsibility is key”

Since: Aug 07

West Michigan

#6 Sep 6, 2007
Shawna Groendal wrote:
I am an employee of Boatwerks and he did not FLEE, he's here right now. No one really knows the facts... There are ALOT of facts about this case that are not being talked about. Joe is one of the few buisness owners that is standing up for himself and his buisness... He paid for the walkway that is gated off, not the city, it's his property and it's beautiful... I'm not here to point fingers at anyone, but I do know that Joe wouldn't have done this to all of us unless he had good reason and I have faith in his reasoning. Both sides are to blame for this and I know that this isn't the first time the city has had issues with a strong buisness owner... And honestly, so what if we parked in an empty space and some times we were so busy that guests would use the EMPTY docks, SO WHAT!!! This restaurant brings in people from all over michigan, it's beautiful! It's only bringing money into our community, his property is no longer an eye sore and boaters come from all around... will a public walkway do all that for our community?? I don't think so!! I may or may not get my job back, but if those doors re-open, I'll be there in my uniform ready to work!!
Its called rules, codes, laws, etc. Thats why. And business owners are RESPONSIBLE to make sure that they follow the laws & codes of the city- no excuses. The boardwalk is public property- just because he gated it off and did improvements to it does not make it his. He knows this. But he decided to do it anyway and push the issue, hoping the city would give in. Well, they didnt. So what does he do? Takes it out on his employees by effectively locking them out of their place of employement without even telling them beforehand... then goes on vacation (the news tried to contact him but were told he was on vacation). Regardless whether you feel the boardwalk will bring less people to Holland, the fact of the matter is that it is public property that he has taken upon himself to make his own for his own benefit. Public property is something that every person in the city has paid for... he had no right to take it.
Shawna - Employee

United States

#7 Sep 6, 2007
You're gettin your facts confused and I really wish you get them straight first...It is not public property, Joe walsh Built the boardwalk paid for it himself 100% and at this time that property is NOT the city's, it's boatwerks property. He can gate it off for our customers if he wants to...

Joe walsh owns all of the property all the way to the waters' edge, not the city.

Joe isn't going to just give the city his land without being fairly compensated... HENCE... all of these issues...

And he was not on vacation, once again.
the mayor was on vacation though along with all the other officials... Joe did meet with the employees, not all of them, but he does care...

But at the same time he is a buisness man who needs to look at this from a buisness point of view... He is doing what he feels he needs to do.

I will end this with saying once again that the Boardwalk is Boatwerks property not the city's... I know this because I attended the city hall meetings... and they will tell you that it is private property that they are WANTING to make public.

Until the city compenstes him fairly for the boardwalk that he installed and the land he's owned for 25 years, he's not going to budge.
Get real

Avalon, WI

#8 Sep 27, 2007
This seems very simple and black and white to me. If the restaurant owns the property (Boardwalk) that boats tie up to the owner has the rights. If any boats tie up on the public parts of the boardwalk to go to the restaurant then the owner has to go by the cities rules.......Am I missing something.
Tom

Grand Rapids, MI

#9 Sep 27, 2007
Pprmint Patti wrote:
<quoted text>
Its called rules, codes, laws, etc. Thats why. And business owners are RESPONSIBLE to make sure that they follow the laws & codes of the city- no excuses. The boardwalk is public property- just because he gated it off and did improvements to it does not make it his. He knows this. But he decided to do it anyway and push the issue, hoping the city would give in. Well, they didnt. So what does he do? Takes it out on his employees by effectively locking them out of their place of employement without even telling them beforehand... then goes on vacation (the news tried to contact him but were told he was on vacation). Regardless whether you feel the boardwalk will bring less people to Holland, the fact of the matter is that it is public property that he has taken upon himself to make his own for his own benefit. Public property is something that every person in the city has paid for... he had no right to take it.
I couldn't agree more. I bet Shawna gets most her "facts" from the owner. I hope he has to pay all the cities legal costs when this is over. Then maybe he will close again and blame it on the city.

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