Starting this Memorial Day weekend, the restrictions on hours and occupancy have been lifted for bars, restaurants and live music venues in New Orleans. The past few weekends have been busy and we will probably see a great weekend. The weather is excellent and only about a 43% chance of showers on Saturday evening. With the shutdown becoming a thing of the past for now, those who were suffering from cabin fever will be coming out this weekend to see their shadows for the holiday.
The state dropped the 1 AM closing rules along with the number of occupants. Posted on line are bunch of graphs and statistics that if any you claimed that you understood them, I would call you a liar. Whatever, can we just go back to earning a living now?
I spoke to the owner of Molly’s on Toulouse, they will be returning back to their original hours prior to the pandemic: 2 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. until 7 a.m. on the weekends. The outside tables that were added for cafe seating during the initial limited Phase 3 guidelines will probably be kept.
There was even speculation for 24 hour operatios on the weekends if business and manpower allowed. Finding workers is a concern for many French Quarter businesses. Trying to entice workers to come back to work at the beginning of the slow season is the challenge. Fat and convenient unemployment benefits is causing a foot drag with the returning workforce.
(Shaddup, you know it’s true.)
Even our supply guy told me that they are busy as hell, and short handed. Nationally there are still many supply line interruptions and suppliers are short stocked as well. Add to this rising fuel costs that will contribute to higher costs for all involved.
Everyone is hoping for the best but don’t really expect it to be exactly like it was before the shutdown. Business owners are holding their breaths waiting for all of the cards to be dealt before they plan how to play them. Customers want to come back to make up for a lost year. Customers are also concerned about the economy and pending inflation as well.
This is the new normal, or new abnormal by a French Quarter metric.