Colorado restaurants can reopen to in-person dining on Wednesday with limited capacity, governor says |

Colorado restaurants can reopen to in-person dining on Wednesday with limited capacity, governor says

Ellie Duryea, 14, waits tables in Donita's Cantina on Elk Avenue in Crested Butte, Colorado on August 10, 2019. (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

Gov. Jared Polis on Monday said that restaurants across Colorado can reopen to in-person dining — with limited capacity and strict guidelines aimed at preventing the spread of the new coronavirus — starting on Wednesday.

“Coloradans value our diverse culinary scene and amazing restaurants, and I’m proud that our state is now providing science-based guidelines on how restaurants can open as safely as reasonably possible for their employees and customers,” Polis said in a written statement. “Diners will have more space between tables and at many restaurants, more opportunities to eat outside. The safest thing anyone can do is stay home whenever possible, but for those who want to shop and dine we want to make sure it can be done as safely as possible.”

Restaurants will only be allowed to operate at 50% o their indoor occupancy limit and cannot exceed 50 total customers at any given time. They are also encouraged to provide as much outdoor services and dining space as possible.

Bars will remain closed, the governor’s office says, and establishments that do not serve food — such as breweries — will be evaluated for reopening in June.

Polis ordered the closure of eateries across the state on March 16 to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. Restaurants have been allowed to offer takeout and delivery since then, but the vast majority have been losing money and have laid off or furloughed workers as a result. 

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Restaurants that choose to reopen for in-person dining will have to follow strict guidelines, including spacing tables apart, using disposable menus and ensuring their servers are wearing masks and can take frequent breaks to wash their hands. (The full guidelines can be viewed here.)

Read more via The Colorado Sun.

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