Call it a "business blackout," and an expensive one at that.
Burned connections doused power at dozens of stores, restaurants and movie theaters at the Family Center, 5600 S. Redwood Road, during prime business hours Saturday night.Utah Power & Light Co. spokesman Jim Wagner said connections for underground power cables near the center burned about 7 p.m. Power was restored to the center and some apartments behind the complex at about 9 p.m., Wagner said.
Hundreds of would-be moviegoers at Cineplex-Odeon's Midvalley Cinemas were turned away from the 7 p.m. show, and managers at Shopko had to lock the store's doors during the outage.
"(The outage) was definitely costly to us," said Shopko Manager Anthony Huntington. "We do roughly 40 percent of our weekly business on Saturday; and half of that 40 percent on Saturday night."
Huntington said more than 200 people were in the store when the power blanked out and cashiers had to ring up purchases with hand calculators.
People ate their meals by candlelight at Frontier Pies during the outage.
"We just made the best of what could have been a complicated situation," manager Adam Barber said.
Barber said the restaurant turned away enough people to fill about 40 tables. "Saturday is one of our busiest days."
The Family Center houses about 20 businesses. Most of them partially or completely lost power during the outage.