'The time has really come.' Broadway celebrates COVID restrictions easing May 14

Indoor mask mandate to remain
Acme Feed and Seed
Posted at 10:51 PM, Apr 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-27 23:51:30-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Starting May 14, Metro Nashville Public Health will lift almost all COVID-19 related restrictions on businesses in Davidson County. Health officials say the city is able to do so because so much vaccine is available for those who want it.

During the worst of the pandemic, when other Broadway bars were hoping to open up more, Acme Feed & Seed decided to wait for a beat.

"It just still wasn’t the time for us, so we shut back down," said Tricia Higbee, Marketing Director for Acme.

But now they're changing their tune. "It just feels natural and the time has really come," she said.

Higbee says with vaccines readily available, it takes off some of the pressure of their business keeping people healthy.

"I think it takes some of the responsibility we felt as a business to keep people safe inside of our building and it puts it on the person. It’s a personal choice for everyone," said Higbee.

Starting May 14th, crowds can be a little larger inside the multi-story restaurant, bar and live music venue. "Not everyone [will] have to have an assigned seat and operate so much like a full-service restaurant versus a bar," she explained. For the first time since last March, all of Acme's employees can return to work. "Everyone from our chefs, to our front of house, our retail, our cleaning crews, our musicians who play our stage, our DJs," she said.

However, don't expect it to fully look like it did pre-pandemic. "If you’re up and walking around, we ask that you have your mask on. If you’re talking to someone not in your group, we ask you to have your mask on," said Higbee.

Masks will still be required, per city guidelines, and Acme plans to consider a few other self-imposed restrictions too. Some of them, in their mind, for the better. "The QR code menus have been a really convenient thing for us, that we were like -- why weren’t we doing this before?" she said.

Now that the timing is right, Tricia says this is a feeling you just can't beat. "Have the musicians back in our building, have all of our staff back safely, and we’re just ready to get back to business," said Higbee.