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State Bans Bars from Selling Booze on Wednesday on Account of COVID

For the uninitiated, the night before Thanksgiving is one of the most profitable nights for the bar and restaurant industry all year.

In the bar and restaurant industry, there are few days of the year that can make or break an establishment; Saint Patrick’s Day, New Year’s Eve, the Super Bowl, and Halloween come to mind almost immediately.  But ask any longtime bartender or restaurant manger about the night before Thanksgiving, and you’ll watch their eyes light up.

This is a time in which family and friends gather, often traveling back into town, where they’ll look to cram in as many quick visits as they can with their old pals.  The easiest way to do this, (that also provides a nice break from the family bubble), is by heading to the local pub for a few drinks.

It’s like a boozy reunion of sorts, and bar owners rely on this unofficial holiday to help keep the light on.

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This year, however, Pennsylvania is looking to make this nearly impossible. 

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Pennsylvania officials on Monday issued a stay-at-home advisory and announced they will restrict alcohol sales in bars and restaurants starting at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving eve in an effort to combat the rise of new coronavirus cases and an alarming rate of hospitalizations in the state.

“We are in a very disastrous situation,” Governor Tom Wolf said in a press briefing Monday afternoon. “We’ll be stepping up enforcement of all public health orders,” he added.

Pennsylvania is ordering bars, restaurants and private catered events to stop alcohol sales for on-site consumption at 5 p.m. local time on November 25 only. Officials said “indoor dining may continue, takeout is encouraged.”

This will undoubtedly hurt already suffering restauranteurs, who’ve been dealing with reduced capacities and the inevitable revenue loss that follows on account of the coronavirus.

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