HOUSTON — Today, the next round of re-openings begin in Texas after bars started opening right at midnight.
After shuttering their doors for two months, bars, breweries and wine tasting rooms are finally re-open Friday morning.
And some bars, including Lincoln Bar on Washington Avenue, couldn't wait to be back in business a minute longer and opened at the stroke of midnight.
They welcomed back plenty of happy customers.
They told KHOU 11 News they have been working hard to put the proper COVID-19 safety guidelines in place, including abiding by the 25 percent rule, having their employees wear masks, providing hand sanitizing stations, limiting six customers per table and marking off some tables with X's to make sure they're 6 feet apart.
After having to close down back in March, these guys say they're ready.
"We had a huge team meeting last night to discuss the policy and procedures and safety precautions everyone is going to take, and you're correct the last couple of months has been rough on everyone – so we're excited to get back to work," Florencio Jopio, with Lincoln Bar, said.
Another bar that couldn't wait to re-open was Hunter’s Pub along South Post Oak.
"We're just one big family here, so everybody is just glad to see everybody," Theresa Bernal, with Hunter’s Pub, said.
Also abiding by the new guidelines, customers here weren't allowed to drink or socialize at the bar or use the pool table but were still spotted having a good time.
Mayor Turner advised customers to be careful. He said the state won't allow police or firefighters to enforce the rules but they do try to educate owners and customers who break them.
"It's up to the people who go to be smart," Turner said. "If you go to an establishment and see that it's crowded you can exercise your authority by walking away. I would not be in an environment where people are not social distancing."
Don't expect all bars to be back open Friday. Some say they still need a bit more time to prepare so call ahead or check their website and social pages if you're unsure.
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