Florida Suspends Alcohol Consumption at Bars Again Due to COVID-19 .. #FloridaBars #DoYourPart

Glasses of beer on a bar

Friday afternoon, Halsey Beshears, the Secretary of Department of Business & Professional Regulation, announced Florida is once again suspending the consumption of alcohol at all bars statewide due to the Coronavirus.

This was confirmed shortly after by The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation:

As I write this, the state has announced several days in a row of over 9,000 new COVID-19 cases reported per day. A lot of it is attributed to patrons in bars not observing mask and social distancing guidelines once alcohol consumption starts.

Under the new guidelines, any business (like bars) that derive more than 50 percent of gross sales from alcohol, will not be able to continue to operate serving on site.

From what I understand from the Executive Order (which you can read in its entirety here), establishments are still allowed to serve alcohol as long they derive 50 percent or less of gross revenue from the sale of on-site booze. So restaurants can still serve alcohol, and bars will be able to continue selling pre-packaged alcohol to go.

You can whine and complain all you want, but fact of the matter is people are not adhering to safety guidelines and the huge surge in COVID-19 cases is proof of this.

Earlier this week, Gov. DeSantis warned bars they would lose their liquor license if they didn’t maintain 50% capacity.

In Orlando, Knight’s Pub by UCF had their license suspended after 13 employees and 28 customers tested positive for COVID-19, and I’ve seen a lot of photos posted to social media of other Central Florida bars packed with people not wearing masks or social distancing.

If you want your bars back, start doing your part – wear masks, social distance, and call out your friends who aren’t. I’ve lost several friends to Coronavirus, so I have no sympathy for those who won’t follow safety guidelines. You have a choice to do the right thing, or face the consequences of infection and death if you don’t.

Also related, you can check out Orange County’s new “Safer, Stronger, Together” campaign, which I talked about yesterday, for more ways you can be a part of slowing the spread of COVID-19 in Central Florida.

Safer, Stronger, Together - Orange County

About Michelle Snow

Michelle is the owner and editor of CitySurfing Orlando. She also owns Zengrrl.com, is a freelance writer specializing in travel and entertainment, and has authored/co-authored four guidebooks on Orlando and Florida. She lives in Orlando near Disney, and hears Magic Kingdom fireworks every night.
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