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A wax Don Draper welcomes New York diners as COVID-19 restrictions ease

A wax statue of actor Jon Hamm stands by a bar
A wax statue of actor Jon Hamm stands with a drink in hand by the bar at Peter Luger Steak House in New York. The statue, on loan from Madame Tussauds, will help fill out the restaurant during COVID-19 occupancy restrictions.
(Kevin Hagen / Associated Press)

It’s a promotion that could be straight out of the “Mad Men” Don Draper playbook.

Brooklyn’s famed Peter Luger Steak House has teamed with Madame Tussauds to have celebrity wax figures mingle with patrons, promoting the easing of pandemic restrictions on indoor dining in New York City.

A wax Jon Hamm — known for his portrayal of ad executive Draper in the hit TV series — could be found at the restaurant’s bar Friday with a cocktail in hand. Other figures on loan from Madame Tussauds include Michael Strahan, Jimmy Fallon, Al Roker and Audrey Hepburn decked out as Holly Golightly from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.”

Wax statues of Audrey Hepburn and Michael Strahan
Wax statues of Audrey Hepburn and Michael Strahan occupy a table at Peter Luger Steak House in New York.
(Kevin Hagen / Associated Press)

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Peter Luger “thought this would be a fun, safe way to fill some of the seats that need to remain empty as we continue to fight the pandemic,” said restaurant Vice President Daniel Turtel.

As of Friday, restaurants in the city were allowed to fill 35% of their indoor seats, up from 25% previously.

A wax statue of comedian Jimmy Fallon
A wax statue of comedian Jimmy Fallon occupies a table at Peter Luger Steak House.
(Kevin Hagen / Associated Press)

Luger, in business for more than 130 years, will keep the mannequins until Monday. After that, they’ll return to the recently reopened Madame Tussauds in Midtown Manhattan.


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