Bar owners worry about recent spike in COVID-19 cases

Could the surge in COVID-19 cases affect the future of Phase 3?

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - After being closed for more than six months, bars have been serving drinks for two weeks under North Carolina’s Phase 3.

But with a record number of new cases of COVID-19 reported in the past two days, bar owners are worried they might have to shut their doors again.

“We are, as a bar, concerned because we’ve come this far,” said Rob Potts who runs the Dubliner Bar in Wilmington. We are operating at 30 percent outdoor capacity...that means 21 people. And to think that we could go back to Phase 2 because of something that the governor has laid out, it’s ridiculous."

Jamie Jordan owns the Coat of Arms lounge on Wrightsville Avenue. He says he’s had to invest thousands of dollars just to reopen and says his customers have not had any issues following the new guidelines.

“They completely understand,” said Jordan. “They understand the significance of what we have been blessed with this past two weeks. They want to keep that moving forward. Do you know the customers are contributing to the efforts of cleanliness and sanitation and masks, and it’s been totally easy?”

The AMC theatre in Wilmington is the only cinema open and showing the movie, “Words on Bathroom Walls,” which was filmed in Wilmington. Movie goers are making sure they see something on the big screen before it could go away.

“I feel like we have a small-time window; it perhaps will be taken away from us,” said John Page.

“While the window is open, my daughter and I are meeting. We are big movie aficionados. Love to go to the movies, so we’re going for the first night and see how it goes.”

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