April 29, 2021, 7:23 p.m.
Posted: Apr 29, 2021 at 7:23 pm
MADISON, Wisconsin – Public Health Madison Dane County’s latest health code allows businesses to be 75 percent busy, while indoor food / drink events can be up to 350 and no food / drink up to 500.
For restaurants, the capacity limit of 75 percent can be deceiving. While it’s a sizable jump from 50 percent capacity, social distancing requirements leave them no room to place customers.
“As for the number of people here, I don’t think much will change if you still need social distancing, ”said Tonya Patten, owner of Draft House in Verona.
Still, Patten says the change will be critical in convincing customers that it is safe to come back and dine in person.
“It’s more about making people feel good when they come in and eat, rather than doing something, ”said Patten.
Increasing the capacity of indoor events is making a noticeable difference for those in the event planning industry, including wedding venues like Barnwood Events in Fitchburg.
“I think when the 150 (people limit) was introduced we were really excited about it, ”said co-owner Julie Wood. “At least we knew they could have a smaller celebration. Now that it’s up to 350, we actually have a capacity of 300 so we could have a full house, so to speak. “
Like Patten, Wood says the biggest change is making the customer feel confident about hosting their event.
“We still wear masks and everythingbut people can feel comfortable that they can have their event (with the change), ”said Wood.
“I feel positive, ”said Patten. “Like every step we took or took was a step in the right direction.”
For a full list of changes, see the latest policy, starting Wednesday May 5th, here.
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