Yes, you read that right! The bars of the USVI are once again OPEN for seating! These words ring music to the ears of all of the bar tenders and bar sitters of these great islands 🙂
No, but seriously, I woke up this morning to the following post in my Facebook feed:
I was shocked…I watch the Governor’s press conference EVERY SINGLE WEEK just hoping and waiting for those sweet sweet words: “The bar is open.” And, once again, this week, I did not hear them. So, being that I have been following along very closely and specifically for this news, the post was kind of a surprise to me. I immediately texted Reed Compton, owner of the Beach Bar, and he graciously forwarded me the press release from The Bryan Roach Administration that we have all been waiting for 🙂
“Governor Albert Bryan Jr. has issued a 24th Supplemental Executive Order that eases restrictions put into place because of the COVID-19 pandemic, including suspending some evictions until July 30, raising the passenger limits on taxis and allowing patrons to sit at the bar in restaurants and clubs.”
Don’t get me wrong, there are still pre-travel testing requirements for entry to the territory and mask mandates in place for ALL public spaces. But, this little tidbit of news brings great tidings of joy for many of us down here. For starters, there are still capacity restrictions in place for bars and restaurants. When the capacity restrictions were loosened from 50% to 75%, a lot of businesses were not able to graduate to allowing more guests because, without bar seating, they simply didn’t have the space. Or more tables for that matter. Now, the bar seating will allow many bars and restaurants to add a bit more space for patrons to enjoy food and drinks.
On the flip side, this should also help with the impossible task of getting a seat for dinner! The allowance of additional seating at the bar at places like Longboard, Banana Deck, Lovango Rum Bar and Greengos (to name a few) should open up capacity a bit. Giving those of us (that’s me!) who aren’t great at pre-planning for dinner a chance to grab a seat.
It’s not a true free-for-all though…
The following is direct from the Governor’s press release that hit the presses yesterday afternoon:
So, in a nutshell, no standing or ordering from the bar if you don’t have a seat at the counter. And, as always, you need to have a mask on unless you are seated at a table OR THE BAR 🙂 Let’s all please work together to make life a little easier on the service industry employees of the VI that we all know and love. Mask up and sit down….They are all incredibly exhausted over this mask police business and could use your help and cooperation with following the rules so they don’t have to be jerks.
Maybe you’ll feel like I am overreacting a bit in my jubilation about this seemingly little change. But, man oh man, I can’t wait to belly up at some of my favorite establishments in town and chat up my friends behind the bar once again. One more small step towards normalcy. And I’ll take it!
Additionally, taxi cabs may now also operate at 75% capacity but drivers and passengers must be masked while on board the vehicle.
I’d like to wish a great big CHEERS to all of you on this beautiful Wednesday….I’ll see you at happy hour!