Just when it seemed as though some normalcy had returned to 2020, the bars of Minneapolis have unfortunately closed back down again. Though many bars have reopened back in June, they’re going to be pulling the barstools out once again in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19 cases across the state. Bars are the number-one target for this as COVID-19 cases have been discovered from patrons of Cowboy Jack’s, Kollege Klub, The Pourhouse Uptown, Sally’s Saloon, Seven Steakhouse Sushi & Rooftop, Stella’s Fish Café, The Loop, and Union Rooftop.
Mayor Jacob Frey made the call about ordering bars to cease service after spikes in cases had been occurring in Minneapolis and throughout the state. Frey spoke on this decision with targeting bars, stating, “By focusing on bar areas that are proven to be hotbeds for congregation and community spread, we can help keep both Minneapolis and Minnesotans safe and help keep trends stable.” The emergency regulation was announced on July 29th and will go into effect on August 1st in the afternoon. “We have sacrificed far too much to let all this go to waste,” Frey also said.
So what does this mean for patrons? Well, bars that offer more than just the barstool setup can still remain open as long as they have other options. Ordering from a table inside or outdoors will still be an option. So bars that brand themselves with tables for ordering food can still function without the traditional bar setup of popping in for a drink. Most bars seem okay with this as all they have to do is adhere to the indoor guidelines of 50-percent capacity, no more than four people to a table, and a 6-foot distance is observed. The Minnesota Department of Health has also encouraged businesses to not allow customers to congregate in checkout and waiting areas, self-service food, and beverage areas, outside restrooms, or in bars.
However, considering how much business comes from the bar, some taverns could be facing financial issues if they can even afford to stay open. Bars not equipped for tables are also going to have to make some changes to meet the requirements of the emergency regulations. So if your favorite bar just has the bar, chances are it’ll temporarily shut its doors. Considering how many establishments have already lost money by either changing this business structure or just keeping their doors closed, it’s likely that numerous bars/restaurants could be facing tough times financially.
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How long will this order stay in effect? Currently, the emergency regulation remains indefinitely. This is based on the current outbreak of COVID-19 cases in Minneapolis and across Minnesota. Cases across the state have been rising with hills and valleys, though there’s certainly a climb in cases. Cases have ranged from as low as six on July 22nd to 862 on July 26th. Hennepin County has been hit the worst by the epidemic with over 16,000 cases over 800 deaths. So, unless the cases start dropping massively in the future, it’s unlikely that bars will be opening back up anytime soon for a drink amid barstools.
Featured Image Credit: The Pourhouse Uptown