Openings and Closings

Armadillo closes its Littleton restaurant -- and stiffs employees?

Colorado has produced several successful Mexican chains -- the Rio Grande group, for example, and Santiago's, which seems to add another outlet every week. But one longtime chain is suffering from shrinking pains -- and its employees are suffering, too.

Last week, the Armadillo closed its restaurant in Littleton, and KUSA reports that workers went without pay in the end.

The closing of the Littleton location leaves six Armadillo restaurants in Colorado.

The company owned by the Lucio family got its start in 1970; at one point, it had a dozen spots -- including one at 15th and Platte streets, in what's now one of the hottest restaurant neighborhoods in town. But that closed long ago, and while the armadillo may be a tough animal, its namesake restaurant chain is going through some tough times now.

Brandon Lucio talked to Channel 9 on behalf of his father, Louie Lucio: "My dad's going to do everything he can to get everybody paid," he said, "and, you know, if there was money to do it with, it would have been done earlier."

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun