Like just about all other music venues across the country, Nashville, TN's iconic Grand Ole Opry has been closed since the start of coronavirus lockdown in March (although they have continued holding weekly livestream broadcasts). While restaurants, bars, movie theaters, museums, bowling alleys and other businesses have begun to reopen, to varying degrees, that hasn't been the case for music venues. There's a light at the end of the tunnel for the Grand Ole Opry, however; they've announced that starting on Saturday, October 3, they'll be hosting live audiences once again. The move coincides with the beginning of the celebration of their 95th anniversary, and includes performances from Dierks Bentley, Terri Clark, Vince Gill and Lorrie Morgan.
"With gratitude to the artists who have visited the Opry since March, staff members and partners who have ensured the Opry went on every Saturday, and a worldwide audience for tuning in over the past six months, we are so excited as we plan to welcome fans back to the Opry House,” Vice President and Executive Director Dan Rogers says. "So many loyal fans make plans early to be a part of our birthday weekend every year, and I am especially excited that many of those devoted familiar faces will be in the first in-house audience since late last winter. Of course we will only be truly happy when we can return to capacity audiences and full Opry shows that are known around the world."
For their reopening, the Opry has developed safety guidelines with the Nashville Public Health Department and Vanderbilt Health:
• Exclusive to 500 ticketed guests
• Physically distanced seating, allowing those in the same group to sit together but distanced from others
• Mandatory masks for all guests, Opry House operations and production staff
• Designated restrooms, entry and exit points
• No food or beverage service
• Temperature checks for all staff
• Enhanced cleaning practices
Learn more on their site.
Meanwhile, in Pelham, TN, Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit recently announced a trio of socially distanced shows happening outside The Caverns on October 9, 10, and 11. Those are sold out, so they've added a fourth show, on Thursday, October 8, and tickets are on sale now.
The space is split up into two-person, four-person, and six-person socially distanced pods, and you can read more about safety measures The Cavern is taking on their site.