Tulsa Bars, Certain Businesses Reopen Soon

Thursday, May 14th 2020, 9:25 pm
By: Erick Payne

TULSA, Okla. - There's just a couple more hours until bars in Tulsa are allowed to open back up for business, with restrictions, for the first time in nearly two months.

Some of those businesses will reopen immediately after midnight tonight. Others plan to reopen tomorrow night.

Some bar owners tell me they're waiting to see how phase two re-opening goes for other Tulsa bars before they open again.

Ultimately, when each bar does re-open, you'll notice the changes.

As bars in Tulsa are set to re-open tomorrow, some, like Club Majestic, will be open to serve customers. The owner tells me there will be significant changes to their operation.

The number of people they're able to let in will be cut from 320 people to 110. Smoking and vaping will only be allowed on the patio and upper level.

The owner said they will also run all their exhaust fans to keep the building at minimal pressure and wipe down surfaces every 15 minutes.

Across town, Mercury Lounge Bar Manager Bobby Orcutt is waiting to see how things go this weekend before he opens the doors again.

"We want to be able to remain fluid and pivot when we need to, and not be locked into any 'this is what we're doing' kind of mentality, because the truth is, nobody knows what's going to happen," Orcutt said.

Orcutt said they're continuing to livestream their shows, and tickets will still be available only online. He said when they do decide to re-open, they'll work hard to keep bar-goers safe as well.

"We're going to remove all the stools from around the bar, we're not going to allow seating at the actual bar," Orcutt said.

He said they're also going to obstruct the wells, so people aren't ordering over the ice or straws. They'll drastically reduce the number of people allowed inside as well.

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum said the steps taken by businesses like Mercury Lounge and Club Majestic will be the new normal.

"Our goal, first and foremost, is to make sure businesses know what they need to be doing to protect their employees and their customers. By and large, the vast majority of businesses are doing that," Bynum said.

Bynum said the Tulsa Health Department and police department are working closely together to monitor businesses. They're relying on people to let them know if bars are following the rules.