COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)
Columbia and Jefferson City are preparing for a busy New Year's Eve amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The Columbia/Boone County Health Department sent out a reminder about local coronavirus health orders to businesses this week ahead of New Year's Eve celebrations.
Businesses in Columbia will still have to adhere to all COVID-19 guidelines. This includes closing venues that serve alcohol by 10:30 p.m.
For entertainment venues and events, businesses must maintain a limit of 100 people or 50% occupancy, whichever number is smaller.
Sara Humm, a spokeswoman with the Boone County health department, said health officials know people are going to celebrate -- they're just asking that those celebrations are done safely.
Gunter Hans in Columbia said their taking a different approach for festivities this year.
Lydia Melton, owner told ABC 17 they will have two separate events, in order to deep clean between the two events.
The first starts Thursday at 4 p.m. with the second beginning at 7 p.m.
Melton said the restaurant has actually embraced the restrictions, making it the theme of the party.
The owner jokingly called it, "the old folks new year's," making light of the business being required to close early.
The department said it is attempting to be proactive and educate businesses of the guidelines in an attempt to avoid any enforcement.
Columbia/Boone County's health department sent out tweets this week reminding both citizens and businesses of the CDC's COVID-19 guidelines.
The health department has also advised against using noisemakers that could potentially spread droplets.
Kristi Campbell, Cole County Health Department director, encouraged residents to celebrate at home in a news release Wednesday. Campbell said those who plan to go out anyway should take precautions such as distancing, wearing masks and avoiding large crowds.
Check back for updates to this developing story or watch ABC 17 News at 5 and 6.