New Orleans closing bars and banning to-go drinks during Mardi Gras

In a citywide crackdown, New Orleans ordered the closure of all indoor and outdoor bars and banning to-go drinks through Mardi Gras day on February 16.

The mayor of New Orleans called the large crowds seen on Bourbon Street “unacceptable.”

She referred to the crowds as superspreader events, calling them dangerous and a risk to lives and the progress the city has made in stopping the spread of Covid-19.

Bars operating as restaurants will also be closed to the public. Packaged liquor sales will be prohibited in the French Quarter and the Central Business District, and all sales of to-go drinks will be banned during this time.

The city’s website also cited last year’s Mardi Gras celebrations, where community spread of coronavirus caused New Orleans hospitals to reach capacity.

The mayor said she would rather be accused of doing too much than doing too little when it comes to the health and safety of the residents, especially hospitality workers.

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