Business owners are still struggling to find people to work, including businesses in the Quad Cities. A popular brewery in the District of Rock Island announced that it will be closing its door at the start of 2023 due to staffing shortages and other issues. The only "silver lining" is that the owners don't know if this is a permanent or temporary decision.

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On Tuesday, the owner and Brewmaster of Blue Cat Brewing Co. (113 18th Street, Rock Island), Charlie Cole, announced that doors will be closing at the brewery in the District of Rock Island, which originally opened in 1994 as Blue Cat Brew Pub. Charlie says that he doesn't know if this decision is temporary or permanent, but he does know that staffing shortages and building issues are making it hard to stay open saying in the social media announcement,

"...All I know is we do not have the management to continue operating. As a brewmaster who has never worked in a restaurant, I have been filling in as the restaurant manager on top of my other roles while we tried to fill that role with new employees and even attempted to bring on a new partner with the experience and passion for that side of our business. We were not successful in filling that role."

Charlie said that they lost their Chef Kevin to his new business venture and recently had to deal with a failed furnace as the Quad Cities saw sub-zero temperatures along with several days of major damages from a burst water piper during the holidays. Topped off by those staffing shortages, the Blue Cat Brewing Co. has to close its doors.

As the case with every small business that announces its closure, owners said that this was an extremely hard and disappointing decision to make. They said in the social media post that they will try everything they can to bring back Blue Cat.

Charlie went on to thank people both at the local and national level for their support, who have reached out to offer help, and asked people to support Blue Cat's former Chef Kevin at his new location, Chevin’s in Kavanaugh's Hilltop.

The post finished with a note of gratitude from Charlie.

This has been my dream and goal since I started drinking craft beer. I have no regrets. It’s been an absolute pleasure working with a great team to revive a legendary brand and make it our own. Even at this lowest of lows, I am so proud of what we accomplished. Thanks to every patron who has supported us. You made it worth coming in every day.

Please drink and eat local. If you love a local business please give them a positive review, make a post, tell their staff, and keep other small businesses alive."

Blue Cat Brewing Co will be open from 5 pm-10 pm on December 29 & December 30 with a New Year’s party as the last day of operations.

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