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Bell County Bars prepare to reopen for second time during pandemic

Posted at 7:06 AM, Oct 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-14 08:06:38-04

BELL COUNTY — Judge David Blackburn gave bars in Bell County the okay to reopen Wednesday at 50% capacity.

It’s been a challenging year for many businesses in Bell County especially bars like Tank’s Pub and Grill.

“Our family has spent a lot of money just to keep it open and just keep these guys here,” said Tank’s Pub and Grill Owner Cruz Ochoa. “I didn’t want to lose any of my employees and stuff like that. Hopefully starting Wednesday, we can recuperate and be a happy bar again.”

Ochoa said they as well as other local watering holes are wiping down chairs, cleaning up tables, floors. Cleaning every inch of their bar, so they can reopen Wednesday.

“Being sure everything is sanitized, everything is clean. They got sanitizers out there, the whole nine yards,” said Ochoa.

There will also be signs to show people which areas are closed and provide information about social distancing guidelines.

Starlite Station manager Amanda Adomavich said they're also preparing for Wednesday. Despite the green light to reopen, many are still afraid to come out because of the virus. However, Adomavich said her staff is working to make sure everyone has a safe place to have fun.

“I’m looking most forward to having everybody come out and everyone have a great time. And really see the community get back to where it was before the pandemic,” said Adomavich.

Even though this is the second time Bell County bars in are reopening during the pandemic, they’re treating their opportunity like it’s their last chance.

“I feel like everyone is concerned for every bar and club out there, is ‘he(Governor Abbott) going to shut us down again? 'We're trying to make sure that we stay on top of it every single time,” said Adomavich.

That means an all-out effort from everyone. “If we shut down again we’re not sure if we’re gonna make it this time. I’m just praying that we don’t shut down and everybody abides by the rules there are 51 bars and don’t blow it for the small bars that are trying to to keep it that way,” said Ochoa.

Local bar owners say that they were given a checklist by the state with guidelines and procedures including checking personnel are sick or showings symptoms and making sure guests are seated in small groups.