Feeling cooped up? There's a Plan B for that

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Lodge offers locals a getaway from their homes

  • Athena Laubacher of Ridgway enjoys a tequila at the bar of the Ridgway Lodge and Star Saloon. She took advantage of the hotel's offer for locals who needed a break from home during the "stay-at-home" COVID-19 order.
    Athena Laubacher of Ridgway enjoys a tequila at the bar of the Ridgway Lodge and Star Saloon. She took advantage of the hotel's offer for locals who needed a break from home during the "stay-at-home" COVID-19 order.
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Local businesses have had to get creative to maintain their income streams in this time of restrictions on travel and public gatherings. One local business has found an outside-the-box idea that fills a need – a night’s getaway without ever leaving town.

With Ouray County public health orders closing all short-term lodging to everyone but essential workers, Ridgway Lodge and Suites and Star Saloon owner Adam Dubroff found a loophole enabling him to provide a service seen as vital to those who have taken advantage of it: locals are allowed to stay in local lodging.

Athena Laubacher, a busy stay-at-home mother of two children under the age of 4, escaped from a household of six to take advantage of Dubroff’s Quarantine Plan B. The plan is for locals only, costs $75 per night and includes a pizza and a dozen chicken wings.

The lodge’s promotion: “Need some temporary social distancing from your roommate, spouse, children? Avoid squabbles, arguments and potential divorce.”

Stressed-out and feeling overwhelmed, Laubacher saw the ad and knew she had to take advantage of the opportunity.

“It was the best decision I have made in a long time,” the 27-year-old Ridgway resident said. “I feel like everybody is feeling the pressure and not a lot of people are taking advantage of the resources we have in our amazing community.”

Laubacher loved the experience, not only because she got to escape, be someone else for a while and enjoy the tranquility, but because she got to give something to the community.

Laubacher said it felt good to be able to tip the bartender, knowing hours had been cut not only at the lodge but also at the bartender’s other job with the closure of traditional dining and lodging in the county.

“In my opinion, helping to grow our small economy versus the larger one is better than nothing and being able to help them (Ridgway Lodge and Star Saloon) have an extra $75 this week and not lay off more people and not be at the bare minimum was so worth it,” Laubacher said.

With traditional means of self-care and escape from day-to-day stresses, like massage, spa treatments and hair salons, all closed, simple things like an uninterrupted shower and a good night’s sleep can be the new luxury.

Laubacher said she had some tequila at the bar, took her food to her room and went to sleep.

“Then I got up and took a shower without my children busting in on me,” she said, laughing. “I came home and a major weight was lifted.”

Laubacher said self-care is important to “center ourselves to continue to help others.”

“I think it is important to take the time to really check yourself before you wreck yourself,” Laubacher said.

“I am thankful for my family and for the interactions we were having, but I am also thankful to be able to take a step away from that and find myself again, which I feel like a lot of people are struggling to do, especially those who have lost their jobs.”

Laubacher said she plans to give her spouse a turn at Quarantine Plan B. She is also making plans to leave the children with another caregiver and enjoy Quarantine Plan B with her spouse.