An everyday bistro | The Columbus Dispatch

Sarah Payne, 28, left, and Bryan Hudson, 22, serve lunches to Karen Lyon of East Liberty, left, and Lois Wilcox of Zanesfield at the newly opened Chattan Loch Bistro in downtown Bellefontaine, where owner Tracey McPherson hires people of all abilities. Full Story
rgj

Celina, OH

#1 Jan 15, 2010
It would have been nice of the reporter to give the address of this restaurant. Guessing from the small map (which is not easy to read) the restaurant is on East Columbus St, two blocks away from the courthouse in downtown Bellefontaine. It's a good thing I know where Bellefontaine is located. I'm going to make a luncheon visit to the Chattan Loch Bistro.
buckeyekelly

Columbus, OH

#2 Jan 15, 2010
Thank you very much for a positive, well written article. Too often the unaware public assumes those with disabilities or those that receive disability benefits are lazy, a drain on the economy, and a tax burden. Simple AFFORDABLE adjustments to help employees work TOWARDS their abilities can make a true difference. This is called universal design in education, and if more schools, communities, and workplaces adopted the concept, we all benefit, not just those who have different abilities or disabilities.

Additionally, it's great to see a piece that writes person-first. This reporter was sure to NOT identify these employees by their disabilities. They aren't disabled - they have disabilities. They're people first.

“"For where your treasure is,"”

Since: Jul 09

Rural Central Ohio

#3 Jan 15, 2010
A very nice article.
Just saying

Columbus, OH

#4 Jan 15, 2010
Per an article in the Bellefontaine local paper the restaurant is "at the east end of a building at 212 E. Columbus Ave."

Overall, a fascinating concept - kudos for the imagination and hard work invested to get this far, and here's hoping it really takes off.
a reader

Dublin, OH

#5 Jan 15, 2010
What a great article. She is a hero and I will definitely eat there. Thanks Dispatch for reporting positive news!
Mom to Four

Columbus, OH

#6 Jan 15, 2010
There used to be a place in Bexley called Touchstone Cafe that did something similar. I worked there as a job trainer for five years back in the early 1990's and have continued working in the MR/DD field. Touchstone was a beautiful 100-seat restaurant with a professional chef that was open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We even did off-premise catering.

Touchstone had 25-30 mentally disabled trainees at a time who would spend 6-9 months in the program and then would be placed into competitive jobs in the community. Touchstone provided a "real-world" setting for these folks to learn job skills AND "employablity" skills (coming to work on time, being well-groomed, getting along with co-workers, handling pressure, etc.)

Another cool thing about Touchstone was that it was economically self-sufficient. The restaurant revenue covered 75 percent of the operating expenses of the restaurant AND the vocational training program. Fees-for-service covered the rest. People would come to eat at the restaurant out of curiousity and then would return time and time again because the food, service and ambience were great.

My hat is off to this new venture. Best wishes for much success to all involved!
been there

Belle Center, OH

#7 Jan 15, 2010
Great folks and great food!
Marysville Resident

Columbus, OH

#8 Jan 15, 2010
Great story. Thanks for sharing this inspirational venture. Can't wait to visit for lunch.
Brian Dill

Youngstown, OH

#9 Jan 15, 2010
I applaud this woman for her efforts on behalf of mentally handicapped workers, working at a "real" job and earning your own money is a key to feeling some sense of contribution and self worth. Some day I hope the legal climate changes enough to allow employers to hire persons who have made mistakes, been penalized (gone to jail), been released and are trying to find a way for themselves that will allow them to not commit more crimes. As a society we can't just keep locking up young men who do dumb things without giving them a means by which they can move forward after the debt to society has been paid. I am responsible for hiring persons but most company policies exclude hiring a person who has a felony conviction. This is done because of the fear of getting sued for knowingly employing a person with a criminal background in the event that something should happen. I am not advocating that we not be able to make rational decsions about who we hire and choose not to hire, no one wants to put sexually related offendors working in an environment with children or embezzling thieves in a position to handle cash. But every dumb kid who sold crack or stole a car when he was 18 can't just be given up on.
George Palmer

West Milton, OH

#10 Jan 15, 2010
What a terrific idea! My hat is off to this wonderful business owner. As someone who works everyday with individuals with disabilities, it's great to hear about innovative ways that the community is responding to put people to work! I hope that others will hear about this and try to implement new ideas to serve people with disabilities in the workforce.
Hazel

Urbana, OH

#11 Jan 15, 2010
Kroger in Urbana hires disabled as much as possible. There are huge tax credits to the employer for doing so.
Awesome

Sunbury, OH

#12 Jan 15, 2010
Hats off to this great woman for doing this. My sister has downs syndrome and has been able to secure similar employment from an employer here in the Columbus area. The benefits to my sister have been beyond words, in terms of self esteem, confidence, and having interaction with non-disabled coworkers. And even though my sister works more slowly and needs occasional coaching, she still gets the job done AND her employer benefits by goodwill and positive PR in the community. To me, its a win-win and reading this article nearly brought a tear to my eye. I will certainly be making my way to Bellefontaine to patronize this restaurant. Way to go!
Phil Forsythe

Mount Gilead, OH

#13 Jan 15, 2010
Thanks for the positive, encouraging article about our newest restaurant, Chattan Loch Bistro. My friends and I enjoyed a delicious meal, great service, and a relaxing lunch today. The dining room was filled with many happy customers enjoying the food, great atmosphere, attentive servers, and some good laughs with friends. I hope the readers of your article will come dine with family and friends at Chattan Lock Bistro, nestled in a cozy, restored building just outside the Bellefontaine business district.

“"For where your treasure is,"”

Since: Jul 09

Rural Central Ohio

#14 Jan 15, 2010
I just went down Columbus Avenue, cars parked along the street and the parking lot is full. Good Luck and I hope Bellefontaine Supports this restaurant.
Sally

United States

#15 Jan 16, 2010
Things like this give me hope for my kiddos future, what an angel this woman is! I was very encouraged to see someone doing things without prejudice that help the disabled while fully including them. When you don't go into a situation with preconceived ideas of what a person can or can't do, you may be very pleased by their ability!

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