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Austin author sheds light on an often-misunderstood holiday, 6-car crash involving 18-wheeler brings I-35 traffic to halt in north Austin, Austin’s curfew targeted at bars, not restaurants, due to TABC loophole, One dead after crash involving pedestrian in north Austin, ‘Cancel your New Year’s Eve plans’: Dine-in service restrictions for Austin bars, restaurants begin Thursday, Austin’s Colony residents report orange water, call for accountability of utility company, Driver dead, 3 others hurt in overnight crash in New Braunfels, Texas Senator: ‘Frontline workers should be removed from frontline if they don’t take the COVID-19 vaccine’, Nashville police records reveal previous complaint of Anthony Warner making bombs in RV, Fayette County Sheriff’s Office makes another big cocaine seizure on I-10, Texas AG to Austin mayor: ‘I will take legal action against you’ if COVID-19 restriction order not pulled back, Texas Moderna shipments delayed because of temperature problems, Williamson County EMS paramedics, field staff receive COVID-19 vaccinations, Louisiana Congressman-elect Luke Letlow, 41, dies of COVID-19 complications, 1st reported US case of coronavirus variant is Colorado Guardsman, 2nd case suspected, McConnell introduces $2,000 aid checks bill tied to social media immunity and election fraud, Travis County reports 4,529 active COVID-19 cases, 528 deaths, Hays County has 1,428 active coronavirus cases, 122 COVID-19-related deaths, Williamson County reports 1,479 active coronavirus cases, 200 deaths, Bastrop County has 528 active cases of coronavirus, 42 deaths, Blanco County has 48 active COVID-19 cases and 7 deaths, Caldwell County has 213 active cases of COVID-19, 40 deaths, Fayette County has 32 COVID-19 deaths; 208 active cases, Gillespie County reporting 161 active cases of coronavirus, 17 deaths, Lampasas County has 165 active cases of COVID-19; 14 deaths, Lee County confirms 204 active cases of COVID-19 in area and 23 deaths, Llano County has 160 active COVID-19 cases; 8 deaths, Mason County reports 69 active cases of COVID-19 and 2 deaths, Milam County has 142 active COVID-19 cases, 11 deaths, Local pharmacies can start vaccinating people in Phase 1B ‘immediately,’ some aren’t ready, Local home security cam captures eerie photos over holiday weekend, Cedar spikes to highest level of the season so far, First Warning: Update on the likelihood we’ll see snow this week, Man accused of shooting at Austin police officer arrested in Leander, Austin musician turns to bucket drums and street performances during pandemic, Watch ‘Lone Star NYE 2021’ on Thursday, thanks to Nexstar and KXAS partnership. Disclosure: Dell, Texas Medical Association and University of Texas at Austin have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Thousands of people crowded 6th Street, partying shoulder to shoulder, some with masks and some without. VISIT. Porter defended his agency’s 220 inspectors. After shutting down dine-in service March 19, Abbott allowed bars to reopen — with capacity limits — on May 22. Operation Safe Open, an undercover investigation by TABC, has resulted in the suspension of permits for 12 Texas bars over the last three nights. AUSTIN (KXAN — The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission suspended the permits of seven more bars on Sunday — including unBARlievable on West 6th Street in downtown Austin — for violating the state’s protocols to slow the spread of COVID-19. Complete guide to Austin bars, lounges and pubs. Perhaps it goes without saying — but producing quality journalism isn't cheap. ... 612 W 6th Street; Austin, TX 78701; Reserve a Table. Oscar Gamboa, the owner of Bodega’s in Amarillo, said it’s unclear why his bar was shut down but not others that he sees flagrantly violating rules. TABC told him he was shut down for failing to enforce mask mandates, for not serving food and because the business was too crowded, all of which Gamboa disputes. He closed his dance floor and paid thousands of dollars to renovate his kitchen. "Austin Public Health officials have seen the photos of crowds on 6th Street during Halloween weekend and are disappointed that so many individuals would … 600 west 6th st austin tx 78701 Welcome Back to Star Bar! Shiffrin leads Gisin in slalom after 1st run, Vlhova in 6th Dec. 29, 2020 Updated: Dec. 29, 2020 10:01 a.m. Facebook Twitter Email LinkedIn Reddit Pinterest So in those cities bars are still out of luck — unless they become a restaurant. Serving hearty yet wholesome cuisine in an approachable yet sophisticated setting. Customers, too, when not at their tables, and tables must be 6 feet apart or have dividers to allow for proper social distancing. Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to reflect that the UnBARlievable location issued a permit suspension is on West 6th Street. Last: Guests dance at Billy Bob’s Texas, a honky-tonk in Fort Worth. But in areas where bar bans are still being enforced, many of those businesses are still operating like, well, bars. He did not respond to requests for comment. With a snazzy interior and a patio that puts most other places to shame, Licha's is a prime East 6th destination to get some quality food and cocktails. The Texas Medical Association notes it is one of the worst ways to spread the virus. TOGO BEER Specials: Walks on Water 6-Packs - $10 / 32oz. On Thursday, Escott, the Austin-Travis County health official, placed the county in Stage 4 of its public health guidelines, which urges restaurants, including reclassified bars, to voluntarily limit capacity to 50% or 25%. Maggie Mae’s, established in 1978, is the epitome of all things Austin. Our evening roundup will help you stay on top of the day's latest updates. Nightclubs advertised dancing and drink specials. TABC suspends West 6th Street bar’s permit ... - KXAN Austin ... state agencies for more resources to fight the COVID-19 surge in the Coastal Bend. About 200 are still processing. Bars were allowed to reopen May 22. “Really, Kwanzaa is closer to Thanksgiving," Austin author Angela Shelf Medearis said. Nightclubs advertised dancing and drink specials. It was dead. Shawna Odom, the general manager of the Lubbock bar Kong's, also said she feels her bar was closed arbitrarily. As a nonprofit newsroom, we rely on members to help keep our stories free and our events open to the public. Odom said she received approval from TABC to reclassify in October. +18. “The vast majority of businesses are taking the state’s health and safety guidelines seriously and are able to operate in a way that promotes the safety of their customers and employees,” Porter said. Coronavirus: Austin Bars, Restaurants Ordered To Close - Austin, TX - Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt took the step to avoid potential spread of respiratory ailment. Sign up here. Finally, last month Abbott announced bars could reopen, but only if counties allow. On Tuesday, Austin Mayor Steve Adler said all Austin bars and restaurant dining rooms must close for at least six weeks in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Austin bars apply to reopen as restaurants; 6th Street business starts to pick back up TABC suspends alcohol licenses at 4 Austin bars due to COVID-19 safety violations 512-991-3019; Or reserve online; View our COVID-19 safety protocols here. Those bars and nightclubs are some of the more than 2,500 so far that have been permitted to reopen by the state on the promise that in the middle of a pandemic, they’d convert themselves into restaurants. AUSTIN (KXAN) — A Thursday night on Sixth Street is normally bustling with people, but the street is quiet as bars have been forced to close under … Since June, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission let bars reclassify as restaurants by offering food and committing that alcohol sales will be less than half of their revenue. Verbena is a restaurant and bar located in the heart of W 6th Street. But Gamboa said nearby bars “with gigantic dance floors, no masks on, nobody social distancing, selling Hot Pockets and Lunchables [to comply with TABC guidelines], they’re not closed.”. Thousands of people crowded 6th Street, partying shoulder to shoulder, some with masks and some without. All of this happened as bars in Austin were still under a shutdown order to stop the spread of the coronavirus. As the night wore on, more people gathered inside The Vault in downtown San Marcos for drinks and dancing. Co-owner Steve Basile blamed the closure on decreasing foot traffic downtown. Norwood said the sooner coronavirus is under control, the better off businesses like bars will be. TABC says it is “strictly monitoring bar and restaurant activity and will pursue emergency license suspensions if there are violations that are a threat to public health and safety.” A second infraction of the state’s order results in a 60-day permit suspension. Not unusual since it was a Monday and during yet another spike in COVID … A woman applied flash eyelashes to her friend in preparation for a night out on the square in San Marcos in October. “We warned businesses TABC will have no tolerance for breaking the rules, and now, some bars are paying the price. We planned on checking out the 6th street bar scene, some good resturants and some sight seeing. The commission has received more than 2,700 applications from bars seeking reclassification, a small number of which have been denied. Asked whether he would expand local authority to impose safety restrictions, Abbott blamed local officials for not being stringent enough in a press conference last week. Photos, directions, Google views, maps, descriptives, links and reviews. The Mueller location is still open. The pub opened October with Gov, Greg Abbott's decision to allow bars to reopen at 50% capacity. In Austin, UnBARlievable, Buford’s Backyard Beer Garden and Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot Icehouse on West Sixth were issued 30-day permit suspensions over the weekend. His order to temporarily shut down some businesses was rejected by an appeals court. © 1998 - 2020 Nexstar Inc. | All Rights Reserved. The governor has had a tumultuous relationship with bars since the beginning of the pandemic. Live Performance, Friends on 6th Street - Austin, Texas I left from the side entrance after shooting the Driskill Christmas Tree, and walked a 1/2 block south to 6th Street. Before, it was solely up to the county judge. That was met with anger and a lawsuit from dozens of Texas’ bar owners who said that Abbott was unfairly targeting their industry while other businesses were allowed to continue. First: A doorman takes temperatures outside of Mesquites Bar and Grill before customers entered in Lubbock. Just weeks after Halloween, with Thanksgiving on the horizon, frustrated health experts and local officials say the loophole is defeating the purpose of the bar ban and could be one reason the state is battling its largest outbreak in months. Crowler 3-packs - $25 / Samuel - 750ml Bottle $20, TWO for $30 Those bars and nightclubs are some of the more than 2,500 so far that have been permitted to reopen by the state on the promise that in the middle of a pandemic, they’d convert themselves into restaurants. Earl Houston, an employee of G Willickers Pub in Arlington, sang karaoke into a microphone with a single use protective cover, in order to minimize risk of spreading COVID-19. 1306 E. 6th Street Licha's Cantina is a great place to have a birthday, or just eat and drink like you're celebrating one. In Texas’ worst hit county, El Paso, where the hospitalization rate is 38% and cases have surged for weeks, County Judge Ricardo Samaniego is desperate. “Packed bars, where people are talking very close to each other and they're shouting, or they're yelling and people are touching a lot — that's super high risk,” said Aliza Norwood, a medical expert at the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin. Interim Medical Director and Health Authority Mark Escott shared the information during the Travis County Commissioners voting session today, December 22.. Dr. Escott repeated his concerns regarding bars that are open right now with restaurant permits. I was like literally 75% are wearing masks here,” Odom said. “We are at a precarious spot right now where cases are rising across the country, cases are rising across Texas,” said Mark Escott, interim Austin-Travis County health authority, before adding, “We really have to find a way to stabilize things to avoid that surge.”. Now applications will be reviewed by Mendenhall's office first. “Protecting the health and safety of Texans during this pandemic is our top priority,” TABC Executive Director Bentley Nettles said. Austin Public Health released a list of city bars that have received citations for COVID-19 violations since March. Shuttering Texas’ nearly 8,000 bars has been one of Gov. “And if you get around it, if you're trying to cheat, then you're sort of eliminating the reduced transmission that you're trying to achieve.”. As COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations balloon, public health experts and local officials worry the loopholes are one reason behind the recent rise. “Where were you when bars turned to restaurants and charged food funds so they could have 51% of food sales [while otherwise still acting as bars]?” he said in an interview. Nov. 25, 20205 AM. She received a written warning. “There's absolutely no reason that our businesses should either be singled out or targeted.”. With over 15,000 square feet of event space, 7 bars, 3 stages, multiple floors, a max capacity of 1,000 guests and a location that is steps from the convention center and numerous prominent downtown hotels… This is Austin’s most iconic and premier destination. Thousands of people crowded 6th Street, partying shoulder to shoulder, some with masks and some without. Williamson County Sheriff Robert Chody claims election fraud, files lawsuit against Sheriff-elect Mike Gleason, Arrested man accused of throwing large concrete objects off South Congress overpass, Heavy rain, storms and wintry mix potential while temps plummet, Hays County implements more thorough ‘small outdoor event’ application process, Texas Universities and Schools Response to Coronavirus, UnBARlievable, Buford’s Backyard Beer Garden and Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot Icehouse on West Sixth, What is Kwanzaa? Answer 1 of 22: We are scheduled to be visiting Austin in mid July and are wondering what is open and how much activity has resumed. Longtime resident Andrei Matei captured the "eerie" and "empty" streets of Austin's Sixth Street last Tuesday. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Greg Abbott’s most drastic safety restrictions. Cases of COVID 19 are exploding at several local state prisons ... Austin, wanted to come along for the venture. Chris Porter, a TABC spokesperson, said that since June, the agency has conducted more than 20,000 inspections of facilities, shutting more than 200 down for 30 days because of infractions. If the current trend continues — over 8,300 Texans were hospitalized with confirmed coronavirus infections Monday, up by nearly 900 from last week — “there may be a time in which it is appropriate to shut down bars and restaurants completely,” Norwood said. Gov. A running list of bars in Austin that have reopened their indoor and outdoor spaces. Public health officials and experts have said since this spring that bars pose unique dangers for spreading COVID-19. in Stage 4 of its public health guidelines. A week later, TABC agents wrote them up for not enough people wearing masks, though she claims everyone was seated at their tables, which means they weren’t required. Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins sent a letter earlier this month, citing health officials, asking Abbott to let them take measures to restrict gatherings to stop the spread. But in late June, as cases and hospitalizations soared in Texas, Abbott ordered the bars to once again close their doors, expressing regret for opening them too quickly in the first place. “I've literally went in other bars over here, and there's not been a face mask in sight. More than half of the bars on the City's list are located somewhere on Sixth Street. Servers would also have to wear masks at all times. Gov. But Abbott, who has concentrated power within himself to take action on COVID-19, said he has no plans to do so. Halloween this year in downtown Austin was a raucous affair. 612 W 6th Street; Austin, TX 78701; CONTACT. Guests danced at Billy Bob’s Texas in Fort Worth. English:In the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic, bar owners on the iconic 6th St in Austin, TX boarded up their windows to avoid break-ins since everyone overstocked in preparation for SXSW--a nationally-attended festival that was ultimately cancelled by the local government due to safety concerns. Still, even as health experts urge the public to avoid bars, the industry has tried to downplay any risks. by Dan Rosenzweig-Ziff Learn more: https://t.co/w5X2KTSkFIVideo at The New PR’s in Fort Worth and UnBARlievable (West 6th) in Austin ⬇️ 1/3 pic.twitter.com/YGLFx0x6gB. The order stops dine-in and beverage services at restaurants and bars beginning at 10:30 p.m. and 6 a.m. from Dec. 31 through Sunday, Jan. 3. Thousands of people crowded 6th Street, partying shoulder to shoulder, some with masks and some without. From left, Malachi Bryant and Jay Smith danced together on their first date at Veranda Rooftop Bar and Patio in San Marcos. Delivery. HAYS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — There's now a more thorough process for applying to host a small outdoor event within Hays County limits. Gov. During the coronavirus pandemic, the usually packed Sixth Street, known for its strip of bars, went quiet after government officials temporarily shut down its bars … ... Back in June, Governor Greg Abbott ordered all bars closed following a surge of COVID-19 cases. Best Karaoke in Sixth Street District, Austin, TX, United States - Penny Lane Street Bar, Ego's, National Karaoke League - Austin Division, Sledge Hammer On Sixth, Karaoke Riot, Austin Fun Club ... Curbside pickup during COVID-19. “If less people get sick, there's less likelihood that community spread will rise, less likelihood that hospitals will fill up and then less likelihood that we'll have to shut down bars and restaurants,” she said. Coronavirus Austin bars apply to reopen as restaurants; 6th Street business starts to pick back up The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission recently said that qualifying bars could apply to … Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune's journalism. Among his list of demands, he asked Abbott to “close any venues functionally serving as bars, and [close] any loopholes permitting bar operations that may have been created by the TABC.”, In Austin, where over 260 bars reclassified, more than half of cases earlier this month came from young people age 20 to 39. Michael Klein, the head of the Texas Bar and Nightclub Alliance, said that with such a high recovery rate for COVID-19, government officials should allow businesses and customers to decide about opening. And during a media call soon after Halloween, Janet Pichette, Austin Public Health’s chief epidemiologist, warned that the city was beginning to see an uptick in cases and “the impact of Halloween gatherings on our community.”. Austin bars apply to reopen as restaurants; 6th Street business starts to pick back up US coronavirus: Former CDC director doubles down on importance of … Show us with your support. “The restrictions were put in place for a reason,” said Dr. Philip Huang, the director of Dallas Public Health. The West 6th Street bar … In what is usually a popular, crowded area, Austin's Sixth Street … Greg Abbott’s state order requires businesses to limit indoor customer capacity to 50% for bars and 75% for restaurants and to create social distancing of at least six feet between groups of customers. But many county officials say bars, operating under the guise of restaurants, are openly flouting guidelines and that with TABC failing to enforce the rules, their hands are tied. (204 East Sixth Street, Downtown) Dirty Dog Bar: The Sixth Street bar closed … The city is strongly encouraging restaurants to offer only drive-thru, curbside pick-up, take-out or delivery services between 6:00 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. AUSTIN (KXAN) — Kwanzaa is not Black Christmas. He most recently allowed bars to open in parts of the state where coronavirus hospitalizations are relatively low, with permission from the local officials. In places like Austin, El Paso and Dallas, county judges said no. Need to stay updated on coronavirus news in Texas? News. He wants the state to either give him the authority to close “bad actors” or enforce its own guidelines. Greg Abbott allowed bars to reopen at 50% capacity in October. “If the TABC went out every single night, they’d shut everybody down,” Gamboa said. Billy Bob’s has been operating since August 13th under food and beverage guidelines, after previously being classified as a bar. Find a complete list of them here. Takeout. I hope other establishments will learn from these suspensions.”, VIDEO: TABC video from The New PR’s in Fort Worth and UnBARlievable in Austin. Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. UPDATE: Permits suspended for seven more bars as part of Operation Safe Open. Our bar has been cleaned by Germbusters with a virus vaporizing electrostatic sprayer that is 99.999% effective in killing bacteria and viruses with an EPA registered, hospital grade disinfectant. AUSTIN (KXAN) -- Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton threatened Austin Mayor Steve Adler with legal action in response to the city's new order placing restrictions on restaurant operations over the New Year holidays. Hays County announced Tuesday Fire Marshal Nathan Mendenhall will now have a more direct role in getting small events approved. Halloween this year in downtown Austin was a raucous affair. All of this happened as bars in Austin were still under a shutdown order to stop the spread of the coronavirus. During a recent round of sweeps, eight bars were closed after 1,700 inspections. Austin bars apply to reopen as restaurants; 6th Street business starts to pick back up TABC suspends alcohol licenses at 4 Austin bars due to COVID-19 safety violations “In most cases, agents will attempt to address issues with a verbal or written warning, but in cases where it’s determined that public health is at risk, the business could face an emergency suspension of its license to sell alcohol,” Porter said. Do you value our journalism? Austin and Travis County have again reached Stage 5 — the highest level of COVID-19 community risk — and more than two dozen Austin bars are … Meanwhile, bars that are being shut down by TABC say the enforcement feels inconsistent and unfair. Odom was later shut down for 30 days over a paperwork issue. But with more than 1.1 million total cases and 20,500 deaths in Texas alone, public health officials disagree. “Most enforcement that we see is done by TABC," Abbott said. "Austin Public Health officials have seen the photos of crowds on 6th Street during Halloween weekend and are disappointed that so many individuals would choose to risk their health and the health of their loved ones during this time when COVID … Greg Abbott allowed bars to reopen at 50% capacity in October. “People can vote with their pocketbooks,” Klein said, who reluctantly encouraged his thousands of members to reclassify. Abbott said counties where the hospitalization rate exceeds 15% must shut down bars and impose stricter occupancy limits on businesses. Bars that violate state reopening guidelines can have their liquor permits suspended for 30 days by TABC for a … At a time when newsroom resources and revenue across the country are declining, The Texas Tribune remains committed to sustaining our mission: creating a more engaged and informed Texas with every story we cover, every event we convene and every newsletter we send. 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