A year and a half after opening its doors, Urban Lodge Brewery & Restaurant in Sauk Rapids is up for sale. Owner Roy Dodds announced his decision to sell both the business and property Wednesday morning, citing both health issues and difficulties to succeed in a competitive market as his reasons for selling.
In a statement posted to the company’s Facebook page, Dodds said, “The restaurant industry is experiencing unprecedented market challenges. We have reached that point in the life of every business where it feels like we are about to turn the corner, and we’ve run into another obstacle.”
He also shared that seven months ago he was diagnosed with idiopathic interstitial lung disease, a rare but non-communicable disease that causes shortness of breath and a chronic cough. “I have lost 40% of my lung capacity, and will not likely get that back. My condition has stabilized, and while it does not prevent me from doing the job I love, it makes it very difficult,” he stated.
His cough is exacerbated by the physically-demanding aspects of running his business and serving his customers. “Benign or not, I no longer feel comfortable visiting guests in the dining room when that happens,” he said. “Even if I had the financial resources to support my new health care needs and a fledgling business, I would have to give up the part of my job that I am most passionate about, personally taking care of my guests,” he said.
Urban Lodge will stay open through the selling process. Business hours have already been changed to reflect lower traffic through March, but will return to normal with the warmer months.
Dodds expressed his sorrow in the decision to sell the business he started in July of 2016. “Sauk Rapids is an amazing community in which to own a business, and I am deeply saddened to have to make this choice. My staff has been a joy to work with, and I am flattered and proud of how our fans have supported and embraced us.”