Wasatch Front Business Owners Plan ‘Pandemic-Safe’ New Year’s Celebrations
Dec 29, 2020, 7:06 PM | Updated: 8:27 pm
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Some business owners across the Wasatch Front are planning New Year’s celebrations while promising to keep it safe.
In a normal year, you would see upwards of 10,000 people at The Gateway on New Year’s Eve. While the celebration will go on this year, it will look very different.
You won’t see the big crowds like years past at The Gateway.
“We’re very excited to get through 2020, such a unique and tough year,” said Max Moller, general manager at Hall Pass.
New Year's Eve celebrations (ideally) won't look like they did a year ago, but a bunch of them are still planned across the Wasatch Front. I'm looking into what's being done to keep them safe. @KSL5TV at 6pm. pic.twitter.com/lLTYMQrKGz
— Mike Anderson (@mikeandersonKSL) December 29, 2020
Hall Pass is among the businesses that will be open late at The Gateway, each of them using a reservation system.
“For us, we’re very lucky to have an 11,000-square-foot venue, which not only allows us to keep a safe distance between tables but also gives us the opportunity to provide a somewhat normal experience for New Year’s Eve during a year like 2020,” Moller said. “We are at limited number, limited capacity, but also with us having a large space, we still will be at a sold-out capacity.”
Limited numbers will be allowed at the plaza for fireworks, but that’s already sold out. Anyone else will be able to watch it streamed live for free.
“The event is 100% outside and masks are required,” said Jacklyn Briggs, marketing manager at The Gateway.
She said it was important to do something not only for the public but for businesses that have been struggling through the pandemic.
“Our merchants have felt it all year long, but these signature events really have been hard, not having the events over at Vivint Arena this year,” Briggs said. “So they are looking forward to hosting something safe and responsibly, and inviting people to come down very much.”
The Gateway is not the only one. All four Utah Fat Cats locations were planning socially-distanced bowling for family groups.
“We’re making sure that your lane is your lane. It’s going to come clean,” said Fat Cats marketing director Trevor Cannon. He said every other lane will be available, with a maximum of six people on each lane.
“We want everyone to know that we’re being extremely safe. We know that there’s a risk of throwing an event at this time of year. But we know that our safety protocols are in place and I think people are going to be really excited to see what we do,” Cannon said.
There are also several dance party type events planned. KSL reached out to a few organizers, those who responded said they will enforce a mask policy.
As long as event planners file a template with the health department and agree to follow guidelines, they’re typically able to move forward.