In an announcement Tuesday afternoon Governor Polis stated bars and nightclubs in certain areas would close, a measure being taken due to increasing case counts of COVID-19. Mesa County’s variance allows bars to remain open. “This is a close to home reminder we could go backward at any time, and it’s a reminder that it is everyone’s responsibility to keep us open,” Jeff Kuhr, Executive Director, Mesa County Public Health, said. 

During his remarks, Polis echoed the need for all residents to continue responsible actions to ensure our state is able to maintain a downward trajectory of COVID-19 cases, unlike our neighbors in Arizona and Texas. Mesa County has led the way in reopening and has measures in place to promptly investigate COVID-19 cases, which allowed the variance. “There are also some areas of our state that had variances because of very low virus counts where it is reasonably safe to be in a bar-like environment, those of course also remain in place,” Polis shared.

Under the current Public Health Order in Mesa County, all facilities and establishments are allowed to operate at up to 50% capacity not to exceed 175 people in indoor spaces, with physical distancing measures in place, this includes bars and nightclubs. 

There are, however, special considerations relating to these types of establishments. The variance approved by the State of Colorado requires that alcohol consumption in restaurants and in on-premise retail liquor establishments end no later than 11 p.m. 

Residents should understand the risks associated with their behaviors and know that close physical contact with others and gatherings with people outside your household pose the greatest risk of transmission for COVID-19. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person through respiratory droplets when someone coughs, sneezes, or talks.

Mesa County’s Safer at Home plan keeps our community’s overall health as a top priority and provides ways businesses can open safely, but it requires individual responsibility from each resident to:

  • Maintain 6 feet of social distance
  • Wash hands often
  • Cover nose and mouth in public
  • Stay home when sick
  • Get tested if symptoms appear

If you are sick, call your healthcare provider, or the Mesa County Public Health hotline (970-683-2300), for an appointment for a COVID-19 test.