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Flathead health officials close down bars, limit restaurants

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Posted at 2:33 PM, Mar 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-20 10:52:02-04

KALISPELL — Flathead County health officials issued an order on Thursday that closes bars, restaurants, and other public gathering places for ten days in an attempt to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The order, issued by Flathead City-County Public Health Officer Hillary Hanson, closes all bars, breweries, restaurants, gyms, and theaters among other gathering spaces until 8 a.m. on March 30.

Restaurants may operate on a limited basis with take out, drive-thru, and delivery services, but dining room facilities must be closed. The order does not apply to grocery stores or licensed physical therapy practices.

The order does the following:

  • All bars, breweries, wineries, distilleries, restaurants, casinos, gyms, fitness facilities, athletic centers, workout studios, ice skating rinks, indoor climbing venues, indoor sporting arenas, cinemas, and theatres shall be closed to the public
  • Notwithstanding the foregoing, restaurants, grills, or kitchens may operate on a limited basis by providing service via take-out, drive-through, and/or delivery. Restaurants that maintain dining room facilities in addition to take-out, drive-through and/or delivery operations must close their dining room operations.
  • Breweries, distilleries, and wineries may continue to make alcoholic beverages, but may not operate tasting rooms, or otherwise serve non-sealed alcoholic beverages to the public.
  • Food service establishments which provide the primary meal sources for a population that lives or works within its buildings, such as cafeterias in hospital and care facilities may remain open to the population such an establishment serves.
  • The Order does not apply to grocery stores or deli counters within grocery stores, or to convenience stores. Convenience stores with combined restaurants shall close their dining room facilities.
  • The Order does not apply to licensed physical therapy practices, provided that such practices exercise appropriate social distancing.