‘A big relief’: Independence restaurants, bars, open at full capacity

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — Restaurant, bars and gyms in Independence will spend their first full weekend operating at full capacity in more than a year.

The updated order began Friday, removing capacity limits for indoor and outdoor dining.

There are also no social distancing requirements.

“[We are] monitoring the numbers and making sure things were staying pretty steady after Spring Break and Easter, felt this was a good next step,” Mayor Eileen Weir said. “Everybody has the option to make their own rules in the restaurants, that’s absolutely their prerogative. If they want to maintain social distancing, they absolutely can.”

For Robert Greenwood, Manager of Square Pizza in the downtown square says this announcement is a big sigh of relief as they work to attract more customers to the area.

“Overall, it’s going to help us really well. We’ve been getting, our sales been going up and up, every week it goes up and up more,” Greenwood said.

Greenwood, said they are cautiously embracing the 100 percent capacity, and preparing to re-open their dining area after a year of take-out.

“When we came back from last year after being shut down for a month or two, it was like endless of people lined up ready to order from us on Friday or Saturday. It was nuts,” Greenwood said. “We’re getting our staff back, trying to get people hired on, get the right staff trained up. But, it’s a big relief, I feel like.”

Masks are still required in all indoor spaces and when customers are not actively eating or drinking.

Large capacity entertainment and recreational venues must limit number of people in the facility to ensure at least six feet of social distancing between people or groups.

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