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Coronavirus: Missoula Co. orders movie theaters, gyms closed

Posted at 10:25 PM, Mar 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-19 00:25:56-04

MISSOULA — All gyms and theaters in Missoula have been ordered to close due to the coronavirus on Wednesday.

MTN News checked in with one local gym that is being impacted by the announcement.

It will be a long week for gym and theater-goers.

The Missoula City-County Health Department has ordered movie theaters, live theaters, and fitness centers to close until March 24 due to coronavirus (COVID-91) concerns.

Missoula Health Officer Ellen Leahy said these measures will extend the protection against spreading of the virus by shutting down congregations of large groups of people, particularly in certain proximities where the virus could readily spread.

So you may be doing your push-ups and crunches from your living room for a while, but local gyms are eager to help you stay motivated. The Source Health Club will offer live classes on their Facebook this week.

On a slow day, The Source sees around 500 people.

In order to slow the spread of the coronavirus, General Manager Colter Hill said he knows the health department’s orders are justified.

“Our biggest thing is we want people to be healthy,” said Hill, “So if us having to be down for a little bit is gonna help that, then that’s what we’re gonna do.”

Local health officials currently plan to lift the closures on March 24, but we could see other establishments closing in the coming days.

“I wouldn’t for a minute say we’re not examining other areas of congregation or other types of measures as the case count continues to increase, which I expect that it will,” said Leahy.

It should be noted that If a fitness center provides state-licensed physical therapy -- who do scheduled one-on-one appointments -- will be exempt from the closure order.