Arkansas concert with socially-distanced restrictions announced for next week
While most of the country is still shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic, restrictions are beginning to ease as some states look towards reopening. In New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo has detailed a four-stage plan for a gradual return to (eventual) everyday life, with construction, manufacturing, and select retail businesses (operating curbside pickup only) comprising the first stage, and arts, education, and recreation the fourth. That fourth stage includes concert venues, so even with these initial moves towards reopening, it seems unlikely we'll see many shows being scheduled in the immediate future. In Arkansas, however, Fort Smith venue TempleLive has a May 15 show booked for Travis McCready, frontman of Bishop Gunn, Billboard reports. It's likely to be one of the first pandemic-era shows to be held in the US, and Ticketmaster is listing a bunch of restrictions for potential attendees to expect:
CAPACITY REDUCED 80% FROM 1,100 to 229.
VENUE WILL BE SANITIZED PRIOR TO EACH EVENT VIA FOG SPRAYERS.
MASKS WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE IF DESIRED.
PER CDC GUIDELINES ONE WAY WALK-WAYS IN THEATER MANAGED BY TEMPLE LIVE EMPLOYEES.
6 FEET OF SEPARATION FROM ALL SEATING GROUPS OR FAN PODS.
10 PERSON LIMIT IN ALL RESTROOMS.
ALL SOAP AND PAPER TOWEL DISPENSORS WILL BE NO TOUCH.
CLOSURE OF BATHROOM FIXTURES TO MAINTAIN 6 FEET OF DISTANCE DURING USE.
TEMPERATURES OF ATTENDEES TO BE TAKEN AT ENTRY POINTS.
ALL BEVERAGES WILL BE PREPACKAGED OR HAVE LIDS.
TEMPLE LIVE EMPLOYEES WILL BE ACTIVELY WIPING DOWN TOUCH POINTS IN VENUE AND RESTROOMS.
About the "fan pods," Billboard says, "Tickets can only be purchased in these "pods" of 2-12 seats to avoid mingling amongst groups that have not been social distancing together."
Missouri Governor Mike Parsons said that concerts and other live events in the state can happen now, as of Monday (5/4). In Arkansas, Governor Asa Hutchinson said they can resume on May 18; a representative for TempleLive, when contacted by Billboard, "was unable at the time to address the discrepancies between the show's date and capacity intentions and the Governor's guidelines."
It's possible that we're getting an advance look at what attending shows will look like in the post-COVID-19 era, at least until a vaccine is widely available. Stay tuned for more updates.