The owner of the Village Idiot Irish Pub wants to make it clear: The popular Oakdale joint remains open for business and was “never told to close and we never did.”

The message to customers this week comes after the Suffolk County Department of Health Services issued an advisory last month that anyone who visited Village Idiot between Oct. 31 – Nov. 2 may have been exposed to COVID-19. The pub’s John Sarno owner has said previously that he was vexed that the health department did not notify him of the exposure until Nov. 9.

“It has come to our attention that many of you thought we were closed due to the media, however, this is not true,” read the message posted Monday on Village Idiot’s Facebook and Instagram accounts. “While the DOH decided to put out a statement almost two weeks after exposure, we had already been working diligently to keep our staff and customers safe.”

Sarno said a health official told him on Nov. 9 that two customers had tested positive for COVID-19 on Oct. 27, and that another three tested positive on Oct. 29. He noted that, in the meantime, three Village Idiot employees tested positive on Nov. 1.

“We have cleaned and sanitized the restaurant many times … and will continue to do so,” read Village Idiot’s social media message.

“Our goal is to serve our community, while following all precautions and guidelines set forth by the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] to make sure all our staff and customers are safe.”

Village Idiot is currently open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m., and on Sunday, 9 a.m.-10 p.m. The pub is hosting a Brunch with Santa event on Saturday, Dec. 12, from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

Here’s Village Idiot’s message to customers this week

Related stories