KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Boulevard Brewing Company is temporarily closing the doors to its Tours & Rec Center as coronavirus cases rapidly rise across the metro.
The popular brewery said on social media Wednesday that it made the decision out of concern for its staff and customers and “in an effort to do our part to help stem the tide.” The Tours & Rec Center will be closed through at least Nov. 19, but the company said it could be longer if needed.
Boulevard fans can still get beer to-go through curbside pickup.
The Kansas City metro is experiencing higher COVID-19 cases numbers than when the region was shut down this past spring.
Data collected from the Mid-America Regional Council shows beds at metro hospitals are near capacity.
In Jackson County alone, the health department is reporting a positivity rate of 23.4%. The department considers the virus under control when it’s contained to 5% or below.
Johnson County reported a record Tuesday with more than 400 new cases, and KU Hospital had 108 COVID-19 patients as of Tuesday, the most it has seen since the pandemic started.
Several school districts are also reporting problems with keeping classrooms and school buses staffed, as some administrators say they’re nearing a point where they could have to return to online learning.
It has city and health leaders increasingly concerned.
Mayor Quinton Lucas said Tuesday that he doesn’t want to enforce another shutdown, but if coronavirus cases keep trending upward, at the very least, more restrictions could be possible.
“Don’t make us get to that point where we’re limiting activities. We want to be able to have an open economy, just part of that open economy is wearing a mask along the way,” he said.
Lucas said to avoid another possible shutdown, the community has to start acting now to stop the spread of the virus. That means wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and proper hygiene and avoiding unnecessary crowds.