Oma’s Jiffy Burger has been a staple in Waxahachie for more than 50 years, creating a lifetime of memories for its customers. With the outbreak of COVID-19 and the road construction up the street, however, the restaurant has seen a significant drop in sales.
Despite the hard times, owner Doug Curry is confident Oma’s will continue to be a Waxahachie tradition for future generations to enjoy.
“It is kind of a double whammy on us right now,” he shared with the Sun. “We knew that we were going to have the road construction. We were not anticipating a pandemic coming through.
“Our people and our customers have really stepped up and tried to order as much as they can through the phone,” he said. “We are still down about 30-percent probably than what we typically do.
“Right now, we are still trying to break even to get through this time and then we can get back to normal,” he said. “We are just trying to keep our help because trying to find good help is hard. So, we are trying to do what we’ve got to.”
Oma’s has built its loyal customers based on the fresh food it serves up daily from its 70-year-old grill, which was formerly part of Roy Clont’s Hamburger Place that was located behind the Ellis County Museum.
Oma’s has continued the tradition of the local hamburger joint, with its patties ground fresh daily and hand pressed. Along with lunch, Oma’s also offers quite a few breakfast options from which customers can choose.
Curry said he heard about COVID-19 in March when he was on vacation in Branson, Missouri, and by the time he got back, matters were struggling.
“We didn’t know what to expect or how long it was it going to last,” he said. “In reality, it is way bigger than I thought it was going to be. We are still probably a good six weeks to two months away from anything that looks like normal business.”
Throughout the pandemic’s restrictions, Oma’s has offered to go, curbside pickup and even delivery. It has also done some catering.
Curry said he appreciates his staff for their hard work and taking the extra steps needed to protect both themselves and customers.
“The staff has done really well keeping stuff clean,” he said. “They watch the social distancing in there. We have a lot of older people that we serve and we want to protect them.”
With restrictions loosening up, the restaurant is gradually reopening a portion of its inside dining area.
“We can have up to 25-percent occupancy now,” Curry said. “We still encourage people to wear masks while they are in there and try to stay 6 feet away from each other. That is what we are trying to do. So, you can come in and sit down but it is very limited.
“We do have outdoor seating where we can put a few outside too,” he said. “If you don’t feel comfortable coming in, you can still call in and pick it up.
“People are trying to help us so that we can stay around,” he said. “We are going to be all right.”
Oma’s Jiffy Burger will continue to offer to go and curbside pick-up for customers. It is open from 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Thursday and from 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday. It is closed on Sunday. The restaurant is located at 403 Water St., next to the Waxahachie Fire Department’s administration building. To place an order or to contact staff, call 972-937-9190.