Here comes patio season

There’s no arguing that restaurants were among the hardest hit businesses during the pandemic. Limited to take-out only and closed indoor dining four times in two years, many lost significant revenue and had to lay off staff.

Main Street Unionville’s restaurants made every possible effort to keep their customers happy through the tough COVID months.

“We were creative in the kitchen, trying to offer our loyal clients something new and interesting to order for take-out,” says Tom Vasilovsky from the Unionville Arms. “The support from the community was overwhelming, lockdown after lockdown. We can’t thank everyone enough for that.”

Another restaurant that took the bull by the horns and created new offerings was Next Door Restaurant, with its Char Box Charcuterie concept.

In addition to the delicious menu featured at Next Door, owners David Sikora, Johnny Chan and Jason Goodis came up with Char Box as an alternative to regular take out.

“We saw the pandemic as an opportunity to tap into a new concept,” Goodis said. “We had always wanted to start a charcuterie and cheese business as we felt that it was something that people in Markham/Unionville wanted, and there wasn’t really anyone offering it. The concept took off and now it has its own physical storefront at Smash Kitchen & Bar Markham where it has found a home as a permanent fixture of our restaurant group.”

Now that everything has opened back up, all of the restaurants on Main Street are pumped to get their patios, bars and spring/summer menus going. The extended patio program from the City of Markham will be active again, allowing restaurants to extend as much as they can on their properties.

“Patios are really the heart of our summer evenings on Main Street Unionville,” said Niina Felushko Chair of the Unionville BIA. “When outdoor dining was allowed during the pandemic, our patios were brimming with customers enjoying the delicious fare offered at our restaurants.

“With everything open this year, we expect even more action on the street with more dining, music and events — it’s going to be great!”

The main event of the season will be the long-awaited Unionville Festival on June 4. For more information, visit as well as on social media platforms.




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