Bar owners waiting to open doors despite getting the green light


FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Tuesday (May 26) is the first day bars can open in Arkansas.

Troy Gittings is the owner of Bugsy’s in Fayetteville and he said staff have been getting things ready for the past two months. He said every part of the business has been cleaned, sanitized, and power washed. 

But even though he’s prepared, Gittings said he’s been monitoring the number of cases and listening to the governor’s daily press briefings, which led him to wait a few days before starting to let people in.

“We’re going to kind of wait and see how the community reacts,” Gittings said. “But the benefit of living in Fayetteville is we’ve got a really good community, so I think things will be fairly calm and pretty easy in the transition.”

In order to protect everyone, patrons will notice a few big changes:

  • All bartenders will be wearing masks and customers will have to wear one until they get their drink.
  • Everyone will get their drink in plastic cups for the first few weeks. No glassware will be used.
  • To stay compliant with state guidelines, the bar will stay at 33% capacity.

“Just coming up kind of with a schedule to make sure there’s someone regulating the amount of people that are coming in,” Gittings said. “So our door guy’s duty is going to be kind of like that of a restaurant host. He’ll say if we have a table of four, they might be ready in 20 minutes if we’re full.”

Gittings is looking forward to welcoming customer on Friday (May 29). He said he will shut down again if necessary to keep people safe.

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