60 jobless after South Portland Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse abruptly closes

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SOUTH PORTLAND — Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse, open for more than 20 years at 264 Gorham Road, closed suddenly this week, leaving 60 employees without jobs.

The shutdown followed the closing of the Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse in Bangor last week.

Former Bugaboo Creek employees have been invited to meet with the state Department of Labor’s Rapid Response Team at 1 p.m. Tuesday, June 28, at Greater Portland CareerCenter, 151 Jetport Blvd., Portland, DOL spokeswoman Julie Rabinowitz said in a June 22 news release.

Rapid Response staff can assist former employees in collecting unemployment benefits, and offer information about health insurance options and help with re-employment, Rabinowitz said.

Known for its rustic decor and “talking” wildlife animatronics, the restaurant was a fixture in the Maine Mall area since fall 1995. City Planning & Development Deputy Director Patricia Doucette on Thursday said the first certificate of occupancy was granted in October 1995.

“It was part of the original development of Clarks Pond,” Doucette said.

The company has closed other New England restaurants this spring, including  Newington, New Hampshire, and Milford, Massachusetts, in May. According to the company website, the only Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse in New England is now in Nashua, New Hampshire.

Twelve New England restaurants were bought at auction by RRGK LLC as part of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filed in Delaware by CB Holding Corp. in 2011, according to U.S. Bankruptcy Court records.

The stretch of Gorham Road continues to have a vibrant restaurant scene, including the new Tilted Kilt restaurant, which opened this spring. The Shops at Clarks Pond, however, have had a reversal of fortune: retailers Bob’s Discount Stores, HomeGoods and Marshalls left for Scarborough last year.

This spring, however, Eastpoint Christian Church announced plans to move into 92,000 square feet formerly occupied by Bob’s and HomeGoods.

David Harry can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or dharry@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidHarry8.

Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse on Gorham Road in South Portland closed this week. Former employees are invited to meet with Department of Labor staff on June 29.

An announcement taped to the door at the Bugaboo Creek restaurant in South Portland says the restaurant is closed and thanks customers for their patronage.

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Portland City Hall reporter for The Forecaster. Baltimore native, lived in Maine since 1989. A journalist since 2005, covering much of Cumberland and York counties. I joined The Forecaster in 2012.