Orange Park, FL

Restaurant inspections: Orange Park entertainment venue temporarily closed by state inspectors

Don Johnson

State inspectors temporarily closed Park Avenue Billiards, 714 Park Ave. in Orange Park, after an inspection on Friday, May 20.

The entertainment venue is open 24 hours a day with more than 30 pool tables and an upstairs sports bar. The billiard hall also serves food.

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation, which conducts the inspections, sent an email to Newsbreak explaining the temporary closure of Park Avenue Billiards:

“Evidence of vermin activity was observed at Park Avenue Billiards … on May 20, 2022 and an Emergency Order of Suspension of License was issued by the DBPR Division of Hotels and Restaurants. A follow-up inspection on May 21 found the vermin violations not complied and the closure was extended. During an inspection on Monday, May 23, no vermin activity was observed and the Division issued a vacate of the emergency closure.”

The entertainment venue was inspected seven times beginning on May 10. The initial inspection found live roaches in the kitchen (three roaches) and server area of the bar next to the kitchen (four roaches). Inspectors also found multiple dishes of tracking powder pesticide in the kitchen and bar area on the second floor. Both violations are considered high priority.

Dead roaches were also found during the inspection. Inspectors found four dead roaches in the kitchen near tracking powder dishes next to the reach-in cooler and five in the bar area behind the server area next to the kitchen. The discovery of dead roaches is considered a “basic” violation.

A total of 10 violations were found during the May 10 inspection, with two being high priority.

(Restaurants can receive three different violations – high priority is the most severe, then intermediate and the lowest violation is basic.)

Inspectors returned on May 16 and found three live roaches in the bar area. On May 17, three live roaches were found under the reach-in cooler in the second story kitchen. Four live roaches were found around the second story bar area. Employees began to clean up during the inspection.

Inspectors found that tracking powder was still being used.

Live roaches were found in various areas of the venue during follow-up inspections on May 18, May 20 and May 21.

Park Avenue Billiards reopened on Monday, May 23, after the business met inspection standards.

An employee answered the phone at Park Avenue Billiards on Tuesday, but declined to answer questions about the temporary closure. “We are open for business. You have a good day,” the employee said and ended the call.

A post on Park Avenue Billiards Facebook page on Monday morning said the business had reopened.

In other May inspections, Natural Kitchen, 1910 Wells Road in Orange Park, was cited for 29 violations, including five high priority, during an inspection on May 17.

In one high priority violation, raw meat was not properly separated from ready-to-eat food. Ground beef and raw chicken was stored over produce and ready-to-eat items. Raw salmon and tuna was stored over unwashed cucumbers.

Other basic violations included:

  • Milk jugs being used for tea observed in the reach-in cooler.
  • Multiple wet towels observed throughout the frontline prep area not in sanitizer.
  • Multiple food items stored on the floor in the front prep area, back kitchen area and also in the walk-in cooler.
  • Observed employee cutting onions directly out of onion bag without washing before cutting.
  • Bug light observed hanging over food to the left side of the doorway on entering kitchen area. Manager moved food items.
  • Employee’s food found over the prep station table in the kitchen area.
  • Four water filters observed in the kitchen area with a change by date of 10/12/19 (intermediate violation).

The Fleming Island Golf Club, 2260 Town Center Blvd, was cited for 13 violations, including four high priority, during a May 17 inspection.

Inspectors observed an employee touching ready-to-eat food with their bare hands. An employee was observed handling lettuce with bare hands. The high priority violation was corrected with the employee putting on gloves.

Two flies were observed under the dishwasher, a high priority violation.

Inspectors found a time/temperature control violation with cole slaw and sliced cheese in the cooler near the grill to be above the 41 degrees level.

The dishwasher also was found to not be operating properly and this violation was corrected on site.

Two Intermediate violations were found during the inspection. A food-contact surface was soiled with food debris. Inspectors found a lower slicer guard had dried food debris, the can opener was soiled and the cutting board in the prep area was stained.

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation says that each inspection report is a "snapshot" of conditions present at the time of the inspection. On any given day, an establishment may have fewer or more violations than noted in their most recent inspection. Inspections conducted on any given day may not be representative of the overall, long-term conditions at the establishment, according to the department. Because conditions can change rapidly, establishments are not graded or rated.

To read state restaurant inspection reports on your favorite place to eat, click here. Jacksonville.com also provides a database on state inspection reports of area restaurants. To access the database, click here.

To keep up to date with restaurant inspections and other Clay County news, download the free Newsbreak app from the app store.

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Orange Park entertainment venue temporarily closed last week.(Photo by Johnny Louis/Getty Images)

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Veteran journalist with experience in website and newspaper content as an editor and writer. I have worked as a reporter at newspapers and websites in Florida, California and Arkansas. I am a former executive editor at the Tampa Bay Business Journal and worked for 12 years at The Tampa Tribune as an enterprise editor and business editor. At Patch.com, I produced stories for 24 websites in the Tampa Bay area and also edited content for websites in six states.

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