Patrons visit Beale Street before bars are forced to close

Watch: Patrons visit Beale Street before bars are forced to close

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — At midnight Wednesday the area’s new normal kicks in and bars will close down. The Shelby County Health Department decided Tuesday to enact tougher restrictions on bars and restaurants in light of the growing number of COVID-19 cases.

FOX13 spoke to people about why they decided to go out Wednesday evening.

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Some people said they don’t want to live in fear and aren’t scared of going out while others said the new restrictions are necessary.

“I’m a cancer survivor, so for me, I’m not worried. I’m not afraid,” said Lindsey Wolosiewicz.

Wolosiewicz has a unique perspective as a cancer survivor and nurse. She traveled from Atlanta to check out the Home of the Blues on Beale Street.

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“It’s really tricky,” she said. “We just can’t partner with fear in our nation and have to be willing to get out and live.”

Most of the businesses on Beale Street will remain open unless 50 percent or less of the bar’s revenue comes from food.

On Tuesday night, the bar Statuz Lounge off American Way hosted a party called ‘the night before shut down’ but was closed Wednesday night.

“I think it’s a good idea,” said Mary Sproulls. “Close down early, people won’t hang out as long.”

Sproulls said she decided to grab a bite to eat on Beale. Starting Thursday, restaurants will only stay open until 10 p.m. Sproulls said she supports the new restrictions

“It’s less crowds so we feel safer with our masks on and social distance,” she said.