D.C.

Ray's The Steaks in NE D.C. still closed after Thanksgiving break

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At Ray's the Steaks in Northeast D.C., a sign on the door says it's closed for Thanksgiving week.

But regulars say it never reopened and they lament it's demise.

It opened two-and-a-half years ago to much fanfare, during the D.C. mayoral campaign. Then-Mayor Adrian Fenty and current Mayor Vincent Gray came to the opening.

For Michael Landrum, the owner of Ray's, who has restaurants in Virginia and Maryland, it was an experiment.

"A very exciting horizon for an underserved community," said Landrum when he opened Ray's The Steaks At East River, 3905 Dix Street, NE.

At one of Landrum's Virginia restaurants today, ABC7 asked the recent manager of the D.C. Ray's if it was closed. The manager said Landrum told him not to comment.

Customers raised questions about how Ray's was operated in D.C. They said Ray's had no lunchtime hours and no Sundays for the black church crowds.

Ray's website lists hours for evenings Tuesdays through Saturdays. And it also says it will be closed for the Thanksgiving season beginning November 20.

Activist Ron Moten said he always used the Denny's restaurant for his events. He said Ray's never called him back.

"I reached out to them to do events and we didn't get the same response," Moten said.

Another customer said Ray's isn't a brand name.

"Yeah, got to have a brand name or at least come out and do something so people will know it's here," Deandre Brideel said.

Another neighborhood business, the Yes Organic Market that sells specialty foods, is also closing.

The owners say they've determined that an organic market doesn't work in the neighborhood, so they're going to close it and reopen it as a regular grocery store, which they think will work.

But it appears Ray's is just closed, perhaps an experiment that failed.

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