’Closing at 11 is really going to hurt us bad’: Area bars, clubs respond to governor’s directive

’Closing at 11 is really going to hurt us bad’: Area bars, clubs respond to Governor’s directive

Managers and owners of several bars and private clubs in Jonesboro and Paragould say the cut-off time is right when their business gets started.

“The bulk of our business gets in about 10:30, sometimes 11. We do most of it between 10 and midnight, so it’s definitely going to take a hit on us,” said Amy Bounds, bar manager at the Fraternal Order of Eagles.

Thursday nights are college nights at the club and Bounds says doors don’t even open until 6 p.m. Now those doors will have to close five hours later.

“The young adults don’t come out until 10/10:30,” Bounds said. “So, it’s definitely going to affect our business.”

The directive is an effort to reduce the spread of the virus as a result of prolonged social interaction in group settings.

Dr. Dan Johnson, the owner and CEO of the Brickhouse Grill in downtown Jonesboro, also expects to see an impact.

He released this statement:

“Brickhouse has been a leader in the Downtown Jonesboro & Greater NE Arkansas service industry since it’s inception in March 2007. In March 2020 when 8-week full COVID lock-down occurred we were essentially shut down completely for two months, in reaction we pivoted to provide the Brickhouse Bodega for service industry employee & those residents living in the Downtown Jonesboro to be able to shop for essentials while able to distance. Governor Hutchison has been judicious & prudent in his leadership during these unprecedented pandemic times. While these new restrictions will certainly & significantly adversely impact Brickhouse & Brickhouse employees financially; the health & welfare of the NE Arkansas community is without question paramount & of utmost importance. We @ Brickhouse wholeheartedly support the Governor’s decision & will be fully compliant with the hopes that the sacrifices made by Brickhouse, Arkansas service industry as a whole, & the multitude of employees affected are not in vain . . . Wear facial coverings, protect one-another, & let’s truly get thru this together a one community.”
Owner/CEO of Brickhouse Grill, Dr. Dan Johnson

“Closing at 11 is really going to hurt us bad,” said Tammy Hogan, owner of the 412 Club in Paragould.

She says she was fined for something that was out of her control. With this new directive, she plans to be extra cautious.

“I cannot afford it,” she said. “I am going to make everyone leave my building by 10:30 just so I don’t get another violation.”

However, she said it’s definitely going to be hard to survive.

“This is what pays my bills. There and at home,” Hogan said.

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