Loretta Jacob Carlson spent the day Friday reaching out to El Parador customers who had prepaid for special events catered by her now-closed restaurant.
The 40-year-old Mexican restaurant at 2744 E. Broadway had 11 parties - three of them set for August - booked with deposits through year's end when it closed Thursday.
Carlson said those customers can get their money back, or she will help to relocate their events to another venue. In some cases, depending on the replacement venue, Carlson said she also will cater the events.
"We will always refund deposits, absolutely. It is who we are," said Carlson, who co-owns the restaurant with her brothers, Donald and Daniel Jacob. "We are integrous businesspeople in our community."
The siblings announced Thursday on Facebook that they were closing the business, a decision Carlson said they reached earlier that day. The restaurant served its final meals last Saturday.
Among those who received a refund Friday were Dave and Betty Duffy, who planned to hold their 50th wedding anniversary party at El Parador on Aug. 3.
Dave Duffy said he and his wife were calling guests to let them know of the change. The couple already had mailed out invitations - expenses that were not covered in the $200 that El Parador reimbursed them, he said.
"It's just stressful on the wife," he said, then joked, "It's stressful on me because I have to listen to the wife."
The couple was exploring alternative locations but had not finalized plans Friday.
Several Tucson restaurants and venues contacted the Star on Friday morning to offer up their facilities for the Duffy party. The Scottish Rite Temple downtown would provide its facilities for free, said special-events coordinator Peggy Atchley. The 98-year-old temple hosts events ranging from weddings and anniversaries to large meetings and quinceañeras.
Contact reporter Cathalena E. Burch at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-4642.