Bear breaks into Evergreen restaurant, tosses 600-pound cooler

EVERGREEN, Colo. -- A hungry customer broke into a restaurant on Main Street in Evergreen on Saturday night. The customer was a bear.

“I just wish the bear would have left a tip, honestly,” Wildflower Cafe chef Josh Work said.

Wildflower Cafe posted a note on its front door Sunday saying: “Sorry ... We are closed due to bear shenanigans.”

Work and his sous chef, Parker Weckwerth, discovered the dine-and-dash customer’s mess about 6:30 a.m. Sunday.

“I walked in the back, saw all this trash and then saw the freezer in the back tipped completely over,” Weckwerth said.

The freezer has to be kept outside because the inside of the restaurant is very small. The staff estimates it weighs about 600 pounds.

“It must have been a really huge bear,” Weckwerth said.

The freezer has some dents and dings from its fall, but it is otherwise untouched. The bear was unable to open it.

“Luckily, he didn’t get into our sushi freezer,” Work said.

The bear did manage to get onto the roof where Wildflower Cafe has a storage room with its dry goods. He got into rice and brown sugar.

This time of year, bears are trying to take in as many calories as possible in order to bulk up before their winter hibernation.

“We’re living in the mountains. This is the kind of stuff that happens,” Weckwerth said.

Wildflower Cafe reopened for regular business Monday morning. It served special bear-shaped pancakes in honor of the incident.

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