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Restaurants and bars prepare to close indoor dining areas starting November 20

Published: Nov. 18, 2020 at 11:18 PM CST
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - In his daily news conference, Governor Andy Beshear announced new guidelines for restaurants and bars in Kentucky. The guidelines will be enforced from November 20 to December 13. This came as a surprise to many across the state.

“The complete indoor dining shutdown kind of caught us off guard,” John Renfrow, the General Manager of Rafferty’s in Bowling Green, said. Renfrow said he was expecting something along the lines of a new capacity restriction but not a total shutdown of dining rooms.

Restaurants and bars are to close their indoor seating areas by 5 p.m. on Friday. Renfrow said he feels prepared to take on-to-go style service as he was forced to adjust to the same change back in March.

“Last time the first week to ten days was a big learning curve,” Renfrow said. “It was really hard, but I feel like the community has learned what to expect what we can offer.”

We talked to Renfrow just a few hours after the news broke of the new restrictions, so he was still figuring out a plan moving forward. He said employees are already questioning what the future holds for them.

“We kind of don’t know one hundred percent where this is going to go so it is a little stressful for everybody. It is really hard,” Renfrow explained.

Governor Andy Beshear also announced to help offset the financial impact on restaurants and bars, he is dedicating $40 million in CARES Act funding to provide qualifying entities $10,000 in relief for various expenses, with a maximum award of $20,000 per business entity.

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