Fayetteville bars prepare to enforce safety guidelines amid student-influx crowds

KNWA

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Dickson Street is the cornerstone of Fayetteville nightlife. Students are back in town, meaning it’s about to get a little more crowded, and bars and restaurants must work extra hard to enforce safety guidelines.

Richard Tolleson is the manager at JJ’s Bar & Grill, a popular spot on Dickson. He said most people have followed guidelines since places reopened for dine-in service.

“I think our atmosphere’s not as hard to manage because we have tables and dining and things like that,” Tolleson said.

Students are back in town, and many like to go to JJ’s after classes or during the weekend.

“Definitely an uptick in business, for sure,” Tolleson said. “A lot more bodies.”

Tolleson said enforcing safety guidelines on capacity and masks are necessary, not optional.

“I’m really thankful for the law enforcement and ABC,” Tolleson said. “They’re coming through, doing checks, making sure we’re on point.”

“I’m really thankful for the law enforcement and ABC. They’re coming through, doing checks, making sure we’re on point.”

Sgt. Tony Murphy of the Fayetteville Police Dept. said officers and fire marshals will help with enforcement.

“We also need to keep that social distancing and mask wearing,” Murphy said. “Making sure people are complying with those orders because we want to keep people healthy.”

Tolleson said the ABC’s doing inspections almost every week, so JJ’s will continue to meet those expectations.

“As long as we manage it, and as long as we stick to those guidelines, I think we’re gonna be okay,” Tolleson said.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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