Thomas Jefferson once said, “When tyranny becomes law, rebellion becomes duty.” Little did he know that operating a small, family-owned business would one day become an act of rebellion in his beloved country. In this episode, Linda interviews Larvita McFarquhar, a courageous, single mom who is a minority business owner in a small town in Minnesota. She only wants to provide for her family and serve her community through her small businesses. Yet, her governor has mandated lockdown orders decreeing that her restaurant and gym cannot be open. Undaunted and unafraid to stand up to tyranny, this patriotic mother of four has chosen to remain open and firmly stand on her Constitutional rights. She represents millions of small business owners who desire to keep their businesses open and operate safely, despite oppressive mandates to close. A humble woman from a small town in the Midwest, she exemplifies the heart of a true patriot and inspires us all to stand up for America.
© Copyright 2020, Prosperity 101, LLC
For information and resources visit: https://prosperity101.com/
To order a copy of Prosperity 101 – Job Security Through Business Prosperity by Linda J. Hansen visit: https://prosperity101.com/product/job-security-through-business-prosperity-softcover-book/
Linda J. Hansen: Welcome. Thank you for tuning in to this episode of the Prosperity 101 Breakroom Economics Podcast. My name is Linda J. Hansen. Your host and the author of Prosperity 101 - Job Security Through Business Prosperity: The Essential Guide to Understanding How Policy Affects Your Paycheck, and the creator of the Breakroom Economics online course. The book, the course, and the entire podcast library can be found on Prosperity101.com. I seek to connect boardroom to breakroom and policy to paycheck by empowering and encouraging employers to educate employees about the public policy issues that affect their jobs.
My goal is to help people understand the foundations of prosperity, the policies of prosperity, and how to protect their prosperity by becoming informed, involved, and impactful. I believe this will lead to greater employee loyalty, engagement, and retention and to an increased awareness of the blessings and responsibilities of living in a free society. Listen each week to hear from exciting guests and be sure to visit Prosperity101.com.
Thank you for joining us today. I have a very bold and courageous guest. She may not think so because she was maybe shaking in her boots a bit, but Larvita McFarquhar is a very brave woman. And she inspired me and I’m sure she’s inspired millions of people to speak up for truth and freedom. Larvita owns a small business in Lynd, Minnesota. She is a single mother of four beautiful daughters. She owns Havens Garden, which is a restaurant in this small town of Lynd, and she runs Prestige Gymnastics, where she teaches young gymnasts how to flip and flop, and get more fit and have fun. And Larvita just has a heart for her family, a heart for her community, and she loves America, and she loves our Constitution. And with that, I’d love for you, our listeners, to meet Larvita McFarquhar.
Larvita McFarquhar: Thank you for having me on.
Linda J. Hansen: You have just been an inspiration to so many. For our listeners who may not have ever heard your name before, I first saw you on a TV interview where you were explaining what happened to you as COVID regulations were shutting down your business in the state of Minnesota, and you chose to defy those regulations and to stay open. A true act of boldness and courage that I applaud because you said that they had no constitutional standing to really close your business.
And you said you wanted to teach your children about the Constitution. And I was so inspired when you said, “If I don’t teach them, who will?” And so, I feel the same way about what I do with my work. And so, from mom to mom [laughs], I applaud you and I’d really like our listeners to hear a little more about your personal story, like how did you end up in Lynd, Minnesota? And how did you end up running a restaurant and a gymnastics school? And it’s just exciting. So, tell us more.
Larvita McFarquhar: Well, I was born in Brooklyn, New York, and my mom moved us here when I was four years old to Marshall, Minnesota. And after high school, I moved away to New York and to pursue dancing, which didn’t happen, but that’s okay. God has different plans for us. And I was blessed, got married, had four beautiful girls. And then my girls – I tried to get them into dance, but they decided not to, so they are gymnasts. And so, I took up – I stayed at home with my girls just like you and I was a stay-at-home mom. And for anyone who knows gymnastics, depending on what track you are in, it can be -- you can be there for a long time, like 30 hours a week or, you know, up to 40 depending on their training and the levels that you are.
And so, at that time, I was getting separated from my husband and my old dance teacher in Southwest School of Dance, I had called her up and she had lost her husband, and we were just talking. Sorry, it’s a long story. And she needed someone to help her out. And so, I said, “I homeschool. You know, it’s not a big deal for me if I come here and help,” so we did that. But in the meantime, it didn’t get sold. And so, I said I guess I’m buying a dance studio, ended up back in Marshall, but I was looking for a place that you could do gymnastics and dance because at the time, I wasn’t teaching dance anymore. And we were really on the level of doing gymnastics.
And with gymnastics, I don’t know if anyone knows, but you have to have ceiling height. And so, we needed, you know, the ceiling height of at least 17 feet. And so, then we settled on the Lyndwood Ballroom and moved our – bought the Lyndwood about four years ago, 2016. And, you know how God gives you a vision and you don’t ever think – sometimes just something is going to come into fruition. And he had placed on my heart a long time ago, like if I ever had a dance studio or gymnastic studio, what I would want. And my dream was always to have a gymnastics studio with a restaurant where the parents could sit down and relax, and the kids could sit and relax, while the kids are doing other things. That’s always been my dream.
So, when I walked into the Lyndwood, it was dreary – at the time was a little dreary, and I was just – having closed up for a while and I was like, “Ooh, is this going to work?” But, you know, how the Lord, he’s just like, “Look at that place again.” And so I said, “Okay,” and we were blessed and we were able to buy it. And so, it’s been a piecemeal. We work hard and then we put more into it, and then we fix it up, and then we work hard and, you know, to get money, and then we fix it up and buy equipment.
And so, that’s what we did – we’ve been doing for the last four years, my girls and I. This is not me doing this by myself at all. I’ve been blessed with my girls and people in the community that have come along and helped me fix it up. And so, then what happened is in 2016, we bought it and we started with Prestige Gymnastics and we got that up and running. And then in 2017, we started the restaurant. And so, from there, we’ve just been, you know, trying to get it to where we want it to be. Does that make sense? Sorry, it’s so long.
Linda J. Hansen: It totally makes sense. Yeah. No, it’s great. It’s a great story. And, you know, as a homeschool mom myself, I know how, you know, all these pieces start to fit together, and how, you know, you work so hard towards something and these businesses that you’re doing while you’re raising kids and things, it’s a lot.
And a lot of times people don’t think that, you know, moms can do these things, but moms can do a lot. So, that was another reason just – so our listeners know, it was another reason I really wanted to have you on because you are a minority woman, single mom, with this amazing business and vision for your business, and this boldness and courage in the face of adversity, and that I just felt was exemplary and it should be highlighted because I think that oftentimes, the Left just talks about women on the Left, and there are so many women who are just standing up for their families, for our Constitution, for truth, for righteousness, for the Lord, that, you know, they’re running businesses.
They might be big businesses, small businesses, home cottage industries, whatever, but they are truly helping to change the world in a positive way because they are courageous and capable, intelligent women. And I see that in you, you know, and I love that you’re from a small town. I always say that a small town is like a large family.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: And I was reading some of the news reports about your situation and the town came out to support you, even though you told some of them, they would have $1,000 fine or they could risk having $1,000 fine if they came to your place of business that evening when you chose to stay open and defy orders. I loved it that the town came out to support you. So, for the town that’s listening, “Woohoo.” You know, a small town is like a large family and we need to stick together.
So, you told us a little bit about how you started your business, but then, you know, the pre-COVID years, tell us about the growth of your business and like where were you, you know, in the development of your business and economically, and thinking about the future of your business, like before COVID hit?
Larvita McFarquhar: The biggest thing for us, we were in the rebranding phase, because we had – it was – used to be named – our restaurant was named Trev's Kitchen. One of the owners moved away – part-owners moved away. And so, we were rebranding and that’s how I got –came up with Havens Garden. I named it Havens Garden because I want it to be a haven, a safe place for people to go to, to rest, to feel refreshed. And my dreams and goals always – for the place was that people will have an outlet, so they can do – we do open mic because I wanted people to go up there and be able to sing, you know, show their talent, showcase it where they can go and sing, and just – to me, everything’s about doing to the best of your abilities, what your talent is, so the best of your ability to showcase Yahweh.
And so, I wanted an outlet for people to go and do that, and know that it’s okay to do that. My hardest thing is, for me personally, is you know, making a mistake. And that’s why interviews are really hard for me because I’m hard on myself and I’m like, “Ooh, I didn’t do it right.” But I’m learning, finally after all this time, that it’s okay if you make a mistake. And with business, you know, it’s up and down and our business has been up and down. It’s been a struggle to get it to where we want it to be. And that’s why my heart really goes out to all the other businesses that have already made it to be financially set, financially free, because we’re working on that pat. you know, we were building up our clientele for gymnastics.
And I should have told you that we were also the high school head coaches at the high school in our town, and we also did the community services. So, we were building up different things to get more income coming in and do all those things. And for Havens Garden, that was the most frustrating part because we – like we’re doing now, we wanted to have events that where we would have a set amount of people and know how many people were going to be there at every time, and all of that thing. And then every time you’re starting to do something, you know, the governor would say, “No, you can’t do it.”
So, it’s been frustrating. It’s – as a business that is just starting out and trying to grow and trying to – and who was not financially stable, trying to get it to that late level, where it’s not an everyday thing like worrying about money to then all of a sudden be shut down, and you don’t know where your income is coming from, it’s very hard and can be very stressful. And I know that He protects me and I know that He’s always watching out for me, it doesn’t mean I don’t stress, and I try not to think about it and give it to Him.
But, you know, when I actually sit down and people ask me questions, and then I start thinking about it. Then yeah, I tend to stress about it a little bit, but I know that ultimately, He has a plan for me and my girls in our lives, not one that I would have planned because talking to you or being on TV, and doing that kind of stuff, not one of the things that I wanted to be doing. But I’m learning that I have to speak up for myself, most importantly for God and my country. And that’s what he’s been revealing to me and that’s what I’ve been trying to do.
Linda J. Hansen: Well, and as a Christian, I think of the story in the Bible about Queen Esther. And Queen Esther, you know, she had to go before the king to really speak up to try to save her people, and she was afraid to do it. And Mordecai, one of her relatives had said to her, “How do you know you haven’t come to this position for such a time as this?” And I – that was the verse I thought of when I saw you because I thought, you know, here you are a mom, raising your kids trying to run a business in this small town in Minnesota, and now you have become – like so many small business owners around the country, you have become basically a poster child of right versus wrong –
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: – of freedom versus tyranny, and you have been so eloquent and so brave. And just so calm in the face of fear probably, some fear or discomfort, but I saw that and I thought, you know, this is a woman I really want to interview because I feel you do not only set a great example for business owners because you’re not angrily defiant. You are constitutionally defying the orders. You are constitutionally defiant. You are standing up on the principles that made this country great.
Larvita McFarquhar: That’s right.
Linda J. Hansen: And you’re calling out the things that you feel are unconstitutional and that you should not have to obey in terms of these mandates from the governor. So, when COVID first started, what were the first lockdown orders that came through and what was the progression? Walk us through, you know, from March until December now where we’re recording this in mid-December of 2020, and so March to December, what was your journey?
Larvita McFarquhar: So much has happened that it’s like – it boggles the mind. Like did this really happen? So, in March, you know, we got letters. I think all businesses got letters saying that we had to close down. So, we had a class, I believe, a gymnastics class that day. And I was upset because we – I’ve been working with a really good chef to – not really, who was going to put like this elaborate dinner event together. And I was like, “Okay,” but – so in March, we got the orders that we couldn’t do anything, that we had to close down both businesses, the gymnastics and the restaurant.
During that time, you know, I tell everyone – I think everyone was praying, watching, listening to see what was going on, what was real, what’s not real, you know, what’s propaganda. We know how that is. And so, we were watching and then but the more our governor spoke, the more I realized that this is not making any sense. So, in March – at the end of March, I believe it is – don’t quote me on my time because I’m – yeah, I’m trying to – I have to remember all of them. So, at the end of March, I think we had – we were part of a lawsuit. Southwest School of Dance was part of a lawsuit suing the governor for shutting down businesses.
And so, right away we – I was never complying because again, I go on the Constitution. You know, just pushing out unlawful, unconstitutional things that goes against everything we stand for, everything we fight for, everything we worked for for the last four years to get to where we are going. So I’m like, “I’m not – I can’t sit back.” So, we were part of the lawsuit trying to sue the governor. Didn’t go anywhere, of course, but that’s okay. And so, then the governor – for me, it was a bigger thing.
The businesses is one thing, but when he tried to shut down the churches, like that was the line in the sand, like you don’t cross that. I don’t understand how anyone just said, “Okay, we’re going to close down the churches.” And so, me and my girls talked and I said, we’re going to open up Havens Garden as a church, you know, we’re going to – we opened it up and said, “Anyone who wants to have service, any pastor, anyone who wants to come and preach, we’re open.” And so from 5:00 to 6:00, we did prayer time. And then from 6:00 to 7:00, we opened it up for people to come and eat, and we did that for a while.
And then every – the governor just got more and more insane. And so, then he said, “No singing. No worshiping God. No, nothing.” And I said, “What world are we living in? Are you kidding me? You’re telling me I can’t worship my Father, the heavenly Father, the Creator of the Universe, Yahweh?” There’s no way we can go along with this. And I thought, for sure, people were going to be like, “You know, this is a joke. This is a joke.” But they went along with it and I’m like, “What?”
And so, then we said, “You know what? Every time he said something, I just couldn’t believe it.” So, I would get out there and I would say, “Tonight, we are having prayer and worship service from 5:00 to 6:00, from 6:00 to 7:00, come and get something to eat.” And so, we’ve been fighting it that way every – since the lockdown. And so, then – sorry, so after we did that, you know, we didn’t really get any pushback or county, everyone just called, people were just not very nice. And so, then I said, “But we have to fight. If we’re not going to do it, who’s going to?” And so, I didn’t even think of it as a fight. I just thought of it more of as a stand. Like, this is a stand that you don’t cross. You don’t shut down churches. You don’t – more than businesses – fine, the business is one thing, and okay, might get shut down. That’s one thing. But a church is a totally different thing to me. That’s – sorry, yeah, that’s not acceptable. Off Limits.
Linda J. Hansen: None of it is acceptable.
Larvita McFarquhar: Off Limits. Yes, thank you. And so, then we didn’t – we left the choice for the gymnastics and stuff. We left that choice up to the parents. Again, to me, it’s about choice. You educate yourself, and then you decide what’s best for you and your family, not the government. It’s not the government’s role or their job. And so, then like, we were opening – we opened up again. I know, you want a nice timeframe, and I’m sorry, I can’t give you one.
Linda J. Hansen: I’m fine with your timeframe because it kind of all runs together.
Larvita McFarquhar: Okay. Right, yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: And, you know, this is one of the things, it’s – yeah, it’s how you’re explaining it is beautiful. It’s fine. It’s amazing because, you know, so many things happened so fast –
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: – when COVID first happened. You know, I think that all of us across the country, you know, we all thought, “What is happening?” I know I was tuned in every day to the Coronavirus Taskforce and I don’t blame anyone for saying, “Hey, we need to kind of lockdown,” because we didn’t know what it was. But as time has gone on, you see the inconsistency of these lockdown orders.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: The inconsistency of these mandates and then the response is, “Well, it’s about the science.” I’m like, “Well, really, if it’s about the science then why are you disobeying your own order?”
Larvita McFarquhar: Exactly.
Linda J. Hansen: Which we have seen by so many of these elected officials. And I might add, these elected officials who have a paycheck all the time, who have a home, who have a job, and people out, you know, in – across the country are suffering.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: And the small business owners, especially restaurant owners. I’m sure you’ve seen the video of Angela Marsden and with the Pineapple Hill restaurant in California, where her outdoor dining was, you know, shut down due to a mandate, but right across the parking lot, they had outdoor dining set up for a film crew.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: It’s like what’s the difference?
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: And so, the inconsistency here is truly something that we need to stand up for and I applaud you for doing that because, you know, I think every reasonable person would say, if this made sense, we’d abide by it.
Larvita McFarquhar: Well, the biggest problem is he – you know, he called us non-essential. That’s what he said. We’re non-essential workers and to me, every life is essential. Every business is essential. They’re doing it for a reason. They’re doing it because they need to make a living. They want to make a living. They want to support their family. We like to work. We’re workers. That’s what we do. We enjoy that. God gave us two hands. He made us healthy. We’re not going to sit at home and you know mope around and be – live in fear. That’s not the God, the Creator of the universe that I – that he’s, you know, he has not shown me to live in fear.
I’m going to live my life. I’m going to take precautions, of course. But that’s what every person is supposed to do. We’re not supposed to be hiding away. And for him to say that we’re non-essential, that we’re not important, that we’re – that he’s going to pick and choose who’s a winner, who’s a loser, that’s unacceptable. And that’s what we do with our society, though, right? We pick and choose who’s going to be a winner and who’s not, who we’re going to throw away, who we’re not going to throw away.
The big box stores are open, Walmart, the subway in Walmart never closed down, and you have to walk inside there. I mean, when are we as Americans going to say, “Enough is enough.” We’re going to take our country back. We’re going to say – we’re going to stand on the Constitution, we’re going to stand on the Word of God, we’re going to stand and make the stand. And that’s, I guess, really all I’m trying to say is that we have to stand on what we believe in and we can’t just talk the talk. We have to have actions.
And I know as Christians sometimes, especially Christian women – that’s hard for me, too, is that we don’t think we can speak up. But to me, it’s speaking up as love. You’re not doing it – I’m not disrespectful. I’m not rude. I’m not, you know, we’re not doing any of that. But we do still have to take a stand. We still have to stand on what we believe. Otherwise, what’s the point of the Constitution if we’re not going to stand on that? What’s the point of saying, “We believe in the word of God,” if we’re going to live in fear? I don’t know. I don’t understand that.
Linda J. Hansen: I agree with you wholeheartedly and that’s why I chose you as a guest because this is so true. I – as people have watched what has happened in our country, I’ve had many people contact me and actually expressed regret that they were not involved before to prevent what is happening now. And they have felt guilty that they were complacent. And I’ve told them, “You know, don’t feel guilty about what is in the past.” You know, I’ve tried to encourage them and say, “You know, in America, everybody didn’t have to wake up every day and think, ‘How am I going to protect my freedom today?’” because it was something we kind of could take for granted. We shouldn’t take it ever – you know, we should never take it for granted but we kind of could. But now, because of everything that’s happened, especially in this last year, we see – we cannot take it for granted.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: And we all must be aware and involve citizens and fight in a good way. Like you said, you’re not trying to be disrespectful or anything, but we need to fight for our freedoms and stand up for what is truth and right, and –
Larvita McFarquhar: Exactly.
Linda J. Hansen: – will allow our children to grow up in freedom and have opportunity. You had said that you were defying these orders and I know that you had said at one point that the data shows in Minnesota that only 1.79% of COVID cases even came from restaurants or, you know, establishments such as yours. And you know, it’s interesting, like you said, these winners and losers, and when government shut down these businesses, and they make these, you know, small business owners to, you know, not really have a way to make a living, they can’t pay their employees. You know, the one thing that these elected officials tend to forget is that they also can’t pay taxes.
Larvita McFarquhar: Exactly.
Linda J. Hansen: And you know, in order to have any government programs, any law enforcement, fire protection, street maintenance, you have to have healthy businesses. So, basically, it’s like they’re destroying themselves, but somehow they continue to get paid. And it just seems ludicrous to me. So now, obviously, you I’m sure have tried to operate safely. I’m sure you’ve put in precautions. Tell us, you know, for the people who may be listening, who might think, “Well, she’s just being careless.” Tell us about the things that you have done to protect your customers or ways you educated them about how to be in your business safely as a caution against COVID.
Larvita McFarquhar: Even back in March, before they even said, like do – you know, like the six feet, we took our – we moved our seats, our restaurant, the booths, everything. We’ve made them six feet apart. We had reservations at that time because we still didn’t know what was going on, so that we would know exactly how many numbers we’d have in the restaurant and everything like that. We have a special cleaner that comes in every day to sanitize – after we clean to sanitize the place after us, just to make sure that there’s no, nothing. And we also use gloves, you know, whenever we’re serving anything, even for drinking pop or if you guys say soda – pop. Anytime we’re dealing with the customer we have gloves on.
So, we’ve done everything they’ve asked to keep our place sanitary, to keep it up to code, to keep it how it needs to be done. You know, the tables are all set six feet apart. You know, the boots are set six feet apart. We have hand sanitizers that we use. We – oh, another thing is we only use paper products. So, we don’t even use real plates. We don’t even use real cups or silverware. Because you know, that’s bad for the environment. Correct. But that’s okay. And so, we’ve gone above and beyond for sanitation reasons, for health reasons to keep our – to keep the people safe, to keep our customer safe.
Linda J. Hansen: That’s really great. Well, and you had said that when the order came through that you needed to close, you were still going to do this open mic night. I believe it was November 27th. Was that correct?
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes. Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: And tell us a little bit about how that transpired. What made you decide to go ahead and do the open mic, and how did the town respond? I mentioned it a little bit, but I’d like you to expand on that.
Larvita McFarquhar: Well, again, it was so hard. To tell you the truth, we had closed down in the summer, right? We are taking another job, my girls and I. Yeah, we had taken some other jobs to get some money. People were calling me saying, “Can you re-open? When are you going to be open?” But the truth was, I didn’t know if I wanted to reopen. I was just so tired and I just thought – sorry.
Linda J. Hansen: It’s okay. I see emotion and for our listeners, what she’s experiencing now, there’s some tears and I’m sure for anyone listening, there’s tears at their home and in their life, too. Because what small business owners have had to go through during this time is unbelievable. I – if you have been paying attention listeners, you can see multiple, multiple stories of small business owners just like Larvita who have had their lives turned upside down. And all of them have expressed that they are more than willing to go above and beyond, to spend whatever they need to, to do what they need to do to keep their customers, their community safe. But they just asked for the opportunity to be open, to serve their customers, and to let their customers decide whether or not they want to frequent their business or not.
And, you know, I think this is one of the things that we have looked at in America, it’s like all of a sudden we’re looking at our Bill of Rights. And, you know, now we have certain governments telling us, you know, what we can wear. You know, we must wear masks. We can’t go to certain businesses. We can’t go to church. We can’t worship. We can’t speak freely. We can’t gather in our homes. Some mandates in different states have told us we can’t gather in our homes. You know, only six people in one state for Thanksgiving, eight people in another, only ten people in another, couldn’t be more than two families from, you know, your own relatives. I mean, it’s just ridiculous. We’ve never had this in America.
And for some reason, because the media, I believe, has just pushed fear on people, we have sat back and said, “Okay, okay.” And we take it but we have to wake up. The government should not be telling us where we can assemble and should allow them to be open. As you mentioned, like not being able to worship, these are things that have been so a part of our American heritage and help to promote the American dream. This is why people come here from countries all over the world.
Granted, I’m not diminishing the pain that families have had. I know I have lost people I love. I know many people who’ve struggled with it and have recovered but have some recurring effects. It is a real thing. But we have seen many, many health issues come through our country where we’ve never shut down like this. So, America, please wake up and see what is happening and stand up for your rights like Larvita is doing. And I see now you kind of come back from that emotional moment and, you know, you didn’t know which end was up this summer. You had to go take other jobs. You didn’t know if you had the energy to continue with your business. I mean, it’s a battle.
It – my family had restaurants when I was growing up and running a restaurant is hard. Running a restaurant plus a gymnastics, I told you, I also taught gymnastics when I was a teenager and, you know, these things are hard and you’re a single mom. I mean, there’s a lot of pressure on you and then to think about how you want to protect your own rights, how you want to handle this as a mother, as a community member. It had to be just a horrible time of decision-making where it was just a crisis of faith, and what is it that saw you through to that breakthrough moment where you said, “I’m standing up.”
Larvita McFarquhar: Well, that’s why it’s so – it’s funny. I’m sorry. I’m going to go back a little bit. When you had mentioned the book of Esther, me and my girls had – right before the whole thing started, we were doing the – studying the book of Esther and I have a tendency to say to my girls, “This is what you should be doing.” You know, I’m not putting it on myself, you know, like, “No, this is what you need to be doing.” And I’m like, “Oh.” But the Lord, you know, smacked me in my head and said, “You don’t get away that easy.” You know, we have to take – I have to take a stand, too. I have to speak up. I have a voice. Even if I don’t want to, I have to use it.
And yeah, so what had happened, again, two weeks – people have been calling saying, “Can you open? Can you open the gymnastics? Can you open – when are you opening the restaurant and what is going on?” And I said, “Okay.” So, I talked to my girls, and I said, “Can we do this?” And they said, “Yeah, we can do it, mom.” Two weeks before the shutdown, we said, “Okay, fine. We’re opening again.”
Got some classes going, was opening the restaurant, and then he comes out again and says, “We’re shutting you down.” I’m like, “Are you kidding me? Are you joking? Are you serious?” I said, “We’re not closing. We’re not – we said we’re going to do it and we’re going to – we’re open, period.” And so we talked to the gymnastics parents, like before and said, “Do you want to have classes?” You know, we can work it out. If you want to wait till after, I understand that. I understand that they might be afraid and so some choose and chose not to come until after the shutdown. And others are like, “No, we’re there. We want to have classes.” And the same thing with the restaurant, “We’re open. We’re going to be there. If you want to make the choice to come in, we are more than happy to serve you. We would enjoy serving you.” And so, we were open and we’re standing on being open, and we plan on staying open.
Linda J. Hansen: Obviously, they came and, you know, they threatened to take your license away, which they did. And tell us what happened. I mean, was that today that things change for you? Tell us what’s the most recent news.
Larvita McFarquhar: So, just today, at about 11:00, I got from the Department of Health a cease and desist order, stating that I had to for 72 hours not open at all, which I think that just means they tried to get an injunction against me to close. And then, I’m still open, so at around 2:00, from my Southwest Health and Human Services, they come to the restaurant, and they give me my license and said, “Your license is,” – well, I have the wording right here. “The Southwest Health and Human Services Community Health Board voted this morning to rescind the suspension of the license for Havens Garden.” So, they gave me back my license. So that was such a blessing.
I mean, that’s why I said we never know what’s going on behind the scenes. you know, God is working. Yahweh is working. He’s, you know, moving things that I can’t even understand and there’s people fighting for us that we don’t even know. For me personally, that I don’t even know, you know, I sometimes tend to feel like I’m doing it, you know, but I’m doing it all by myself, and I don’t like that feeling. But to know that Yahweh is really in control and that He is working everything out. And to me, this is a win.
Other people might not look at it like that, but I’m looking at it as a win. I had my license back. So, there’s a cease and desist order. We’ll worry about that later –
Linda J. Hansen: [Laughs].
Larvita McFarquhar: [Laughs] But right now –
Linda J. Hansen: Yeah.
Larvita McFarquhar: – right now I’m celebrating and being thankful that, that I have my license back and that I can serve food and drinks, and all that kind of thing. So that was a big blessing today and that was amazing.
Linda J. Hansen: Well, and you said, too, you don’t know what’s happening outside of you.
Larvita McFarquhar: Right.
Linda J. Hansen: I mean, I think so many of the small business owners, and it’s like all of us when we face difficulties in life, we just almost get tunnel vision like, “Oh, my gosh, this is so bad. This is horrible. And, you know, where are you God?” And we go through these times of struggle, but we don’t always realize that there’s people praying for us –
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: – that there’s people trying to think of how they can help us. I saw on one of your interviews that you did. I think it was through The American Experiment. It’s on that website. I think they were interviewing someone from South Dakota. They drove in from South Dakota.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: That is just great. It’s just an example of how people will come and they will support people. So, you know, we can be afraid to speak up, but I’ve heard people talk about this time in our nation’s history being our 1776.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: And that we may not be asked to fight with bayonets, you know, we may not be asked to fight in hand-to-hand combat on a battlefield, the same way that those forefathers did, but we are being asked to fight for freedom. And we must stand up and so, you know, when you were on the news, I began to pray for you.
Larvita McFarquhar: Thank you.
Linda J. Hansen: And so – and when I see these restaurant owners and the small business – these gym owners, these hair salon owners all over the country, you know, it breaks my heart. And I feel like we have an opportunity to rise up.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: We have an opportunity to unite, to make a difference, and say, “Not on our watch.”
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: Not on our watch. And we, you know, we are not the ones who are out burning down buildings or terrorizing citizens, or conducting acts of violence. We are peaceful. We just want to do the right thing –
Larvita McFarquhar: Yeah.
Linda J. Hansen: – to open our businesses and to be able to serve the people around us, and to keep our country free. I know I had texted you a quote earlier today. It was, “When tyranny becomes law, rebellion becomes duty,” and that was from Thomas Jefferson. And we are seeing tyranny become law all over our country now in these different mandates from these governors, and it’s unconstitutional. And Americans need to stand up. So, I thank you for standing up. But what is next for you? How do you see this playing out for you and how can people help you?
Larvita McFarquhar: There – if you go to action, the number 4, liberty.com and there’s a petition there. They’ve been such a great support. They’ve really just rallied around me. I can call them at any time, saying – telling them what’s going on. And you know, they’re just there advising me and just the love. You said I had people actually come from Iowa. I have people calling me all – from all over the country, saying that we stand with you. We believe in what you’re doing and that’s been so amazing. So, no, it’s just – yeah, it’s amazing. The Patriots that are out there that have – want to have a voice, want to do something. And, you know, the problem is, I don’t know – they don’t know what to do. And, you know, that’s how I feel right now.
You asked me, “What am I going to do? What’s the next step?” It’s day by day. All I know is I’m going to be open. I’m going to stand on the Word of God and our Constitution that our great forefathers wrote for us. And that’s what I’m going to do and I hope other people stand with me and stand up for our country. I mean, we should not be just giving it away because we want to live in fear. No, we need to take a stand. We need to take the mask off. We need to open up. We need to live our lives. We need to get back to being Americans and remembering where we came from, that America is great.
Every country has flaws. But the nice thing about America, it has a constitution to stand on and that we can make it better. We can make it great again. We can make it all these things that we have dreamed that it should be. Because we are the American dream. I’m living the American dream. Do we have struggles? Yes. Everyone has struggles. You fall down, but you can get back up in America. It doesn’t matter how many times you fall down. You can get back up and keep going. And to me, that’s what America is about, coming together, living your dreams, trying to achieve your dreams, working with other people, and lifting each other up.
Linda J. Hansen: The beauty of our Constitution is it’s about creating a more perfect union. It doesn’t say a perfect union, a more perfect union.
Larvita McFarquhar: Exactly.
Linda J. Hansen: The beauty of our Constitution is that we are always working towards a more perfect union. So, like you said, America is not perfect. There’s no country that’s perfect. But people risk their lives to come to our country because we are the one – the country that provides the opportunity and freedom. And we need to make sure that we can continue that for this generation, this current generation, but also for future generations.
Larvita McFarquhar: Yes.
Linda J. Hansen: What we do now will impact generations to come for many, many years. So, your act of bravery, your act of courage, I would say it’s a different kind of patriotism that needs to be shown now in our country. And whoever thought that being brave enough to open the doors of your business would be an act of patriotism.
Larvita McFarquhar: Exactly.
Linda J. Hansen: And this is where we need to stand up and I think of these pastors who have, you know, stood up and I chuckled when in the one community that the strip clubs could be open, but the churches couldn’t. So, did you see that one pastor who – he actually like took off his tie and said –
Larvita McFarquhar: [Laughs].
Linda J. Hansen: – [Laughs] “Okay, we’ll just be a strip club then.” You know? And it’s kind of – I mean, it’s sad but funny. I mean, people will find ways to do the right thing and expose the hypocrisy of these rules. And so, to everybody listening, I hope that our listeners will be as bold and brave as you, that they will stand up and just see that truth. And listeners, please read the Constitution. Make sure you know your Bill of Rights. Make sure you know if your elected officials are guarding your rights or if they’re trampling them, like so many of them are now. And if they are trampling them, hold them accountable. Peacefully, hold them accountable. So, I just – how can people reach you?
Larvita McFarquhar: They can email me at LHavensGarden@gmail.com.
Linda J. Hansen: That’s great. And it’s Havens Garden Restaurant in Lynd, Minnesota. And too bad you can’t take out to the entire country, because I think that there’s a lot of people who would order from you. And if anyone is in the Marshall, Minnesota area or anywhere near there, you’re definitely going to want to go support Larvita. And if you have some young gymnasts, maybe they’d like to be part of her Prestige Gymnastics School.
So, Larvita, thank you so much for joining with us. If you could just say, you know, some parting words to other employers, like how they can educate their employees about standing up for these things and maybe some parting words for helping employers be bold, what would you say?
Larvita McFarquhar: I would start off by saying, “Open up. Open up your business. You can’t do anything while you’re closed. All you’re going to do is keep drowning. Open up. Take a stand. Demand. Demand that you are going – you’re here, that your business is here to stay, and that you’re fighting for yourself, your workers, and for, to me, your community.” Because if we don’t open up, you know, small business owners or any business owner, they’re the leaders.
They need to take a lead. They need to take a stand in this time right now and say, “We’re not going to be afraid. We’re going to open up our businesses. We’re going to take the mask off. We’re going to stand on the Constitution. We’re going to stand and remember the freedoms that other people have fought for so that we can have them. Let’s not take that for granted.” People are fighting in other countries for people to have the same freedoms that we are giving up right now. I can’t understand that. So, lead – be the leader that you have been called to be. Open up your business, take off the mask, and start living our lives again.
Linda J. Hansen: Very profound, very profound. I’m sure that as people are listening, they are cheering. So, with that, I just want to say thank you so much, Larvita. This has been an amazing interview. You’re an incredible woman. I know you don’t feel like it. But it takes an incredible amount of faith, intestinal fortitude, and courage to stand up.
And I invite my listeners to pray for you, to support you if they can because you are representative of millions of small business owners around this country who have gone through very similar circumstances, and they need support and help. So, to everybody listening, Christmas is coming. Shop small. Shop local. Buy American. Hire American and support your local community, and support our country and our Constitution. So, thank you again, Larvita. Thank you.
Larvita McFarquhar: Thank you for having me.
Linda J. Hansen: Thank you again for listening to the Prosperity 101 Podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe, share, and leave a great review. Don’t forget to visit Prosperity101.com to access the entire podcast library, to order my newest book, Job Security Through Business Prosperity: The Essential Guide to Understanding How Policy Affects Your Paycheck, or to enroll you or your employees in the Breakroom Economics online course. You can also receive the free e-book, 10 Tips for Helping Employees Understand How Public Policy Affects Paychecks.
Freedom is never free. Understanding the foundations of prosperity and the policies of prosperity will help you to protect prosperity as you become informed, involved, and impactful. I give special thanks to our sponsors, Mathews Archery, Inc. and Wisconsin Stamping & Manufacturing. Please contact us today at Prosperity101.com to let us know how we can serve you. Thank you.