Last Wednesday, Governor Greg Abbott announced his executive order allowing bars to reopen at a 50% capacity in counties with low COVID-19 hospitalizations. However, the decision is ultimately left up to the local county judge.

TABC has approved Victoria County Judge Ben Zeller's request to reopen bars. Bars in Victoria County will reopen Wednesday, October 14, at 50% occupancy. Bars will be expected to abide by specific protocols in order to maintain the highest safety standards. Masks must still be worn whenever it is not possible to maintain a 6 ft distance between individuals unless sitting at a bar or eating and drinking.

While bars in Victoria may be opening back up, not everything will be functioning as usual. Music will be pumping out inside the bars, but dance floors will be closed, so 2-step in place, please. Another significant change to protocol is, alcohol will stop being served at 11 p.m. every night. If you plan on partying hard, start early, and don't forget to call you a Lyft after the last call.

Other counties like Wharton have also submitted a request to TABC for reopening of bars. According to the Victoria Advocate, Wharton, County Judge Philip Spenrath plans to reopen bars this Wednesday at a 50% capacity, following the same protocols as Victoria County.

This reopening of bars will come with a big responsibility for the community. Members who chose to visit these establishments should continue social distancing to their best ability and practice safe hygiene. Remember, it is okay to have fun, but it is more important to stay safe and healthy. The reopening of bars is a friendly reminder that 2020 may have been quite the rollercoaster, but slowly things will begin to go back to normal. We just need to take it easy and rest assure that the world will continue to spin.

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