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Liquor Licensees and Fans Urged to Make Super Bowl Sunday Super Safe

Media Contact: LARA Communications (517-335-LARA (5272))

February 4, 2021 – LARA Director Orlene Hawks and MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel urge the state’s 19,000 liquor licensees and fans to play it safe this Super Bowl Sunday by abiding by MDHHS COVID-19 safety protocols and serving patrons responsibly. Michiganders going to bars and restaurants are urged to stay vigilant and minimize their risk to COVID-19 as a new, more easily transmitted variant of the virus is present in the state.

“As indoor dining with restrictions resumed this week, the game plan for bars and restaurants must include face coverings for staff and patrons, social distancing, and regular cleaning and disinfection of their establishments,” said Orlene Hawks, the director of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). “On game day, during America’s most-watched national sporting event, licensees are reminded to serve only those of legal drinking age and not to overserve patrons.”

Earlier this week, bars and restaurants were allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity with up to 100 people. Tables must be six feet apart with no more than six people per table. Outdoor tents with four sides are permitted under these same rules. These businesses must close indoor dining by 10:00 P.M. and contact information must be collected from diners for contact tracing purposes. If Michiganders choose to eat out, they can make it much safer by going out only with members of their own household.

“If you choose to watch the Super Bowl at your favorite restaurant or bar, please remember unmasked, indoor activities like dining and drinking are still a source of high risk when it comes to COVID-19,” said Elizabeth Hertel, the director of Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). “The safest course remains to support your favorite restaurant with carryout, delivery, or outdoor dining and watch the game at home. However, if you do go out, please remember to wear your mask when not actively eating or drinking, social distance by 6 feet or more, and wash your hands often.”

The latest MDHHS Gatherings and Face Mask Order that allowed the reopening of indoor dining at restaurants and other venues, with certain requirements, is in effect through Sunday, February 21, 2021.  For more information on safe dining go to: MDHHS Indoor Dining Guidelines and Dining during Covid-19.

“We don’t want any COVID-19 super spreader events happening at Super Bowl gatherings at the bars and house parties this Sunday,” said Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) Chair Pat Gagliardi. “This huge sports weekend has also long been cited as a heavy drinking day for fans, making it one of the deadliest alcohol-related traffic accident days of the year. Never drink and drive; let’s make this a safe Super Bowl weekend in Michigan.”

To make it a super safe Super Bowl weekend, the MLCC offers the following reminders: 

Reminders for liquor licensees:

  • Check ID to verify a patron’s age is 21 years or older before selling or serving alcohol to them.
  • Serve responsibly to ensure that no one becomes intoxicated in your business.
  • Intoxicated individuals who enter your establishment are not allowed to purchase or consume alcohol.

Reminders for fans:

  • Follow the COVID-19 safety guidelines and restrictions that bars and restaurants must adhere to.
  • Never let friends drive if they’ve had too much to drink; take their keys away and arrange for a designated driver before going to the bar.
  • Never drink to get drunk; celebrate wisely and use good judgment.

Watching the big game at home?

  • Avoid indoor gatherings or pick a single other household to interact with.
  • Limit indoor residential and non-residential gatherings to 10 people and two households.
  • Make social distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing a priority.  
  • Monitor your alcohol intake whether you’re the host or guest; never serve alcohol to minors.
  • Have plenty of food available, especially if serving alcohol.
  • Take the keys away from a guest who shouldn’t be driving and make arrangements to get them home safely.

It is the mission of MLCC to make alcoholic beverages available for consumption while protecting the consumer and the general public through regulation of those involved in the importation, sale, consumption, distribution, and delivery of these alcohol beverage products.

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