By KEVIN McGILL, Related Press
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Coronavirus-related limits on entry to Bourbon Street, shuttered bars and frigid climate all had been anticipated to stop what the town normally craves on the finish of Mardi Gras season — streets and companies jam-packed with revelers.
Parades and events on Mardi Gras (Fats Tuesday) and the times main as much as the annual pre-Lenten bash normally draw greater than one million folks to the streets.
However parades had been canceled and Mayor LaToya Cantrell lately ordered bars closed. Even bars that had been allowed to function as eating places with “conditional” meals permits had been shuttered for 5 days that started Friday. Take-out drinks in “go-cups” are also forbidden — no extra strolling the French Quarter with a drink in hand.
Bourbon Street was to be blocked to vehicle and foot visitors at 7 a.m., with entry restricted to residents, enterprise managers and workers, lodge company and restaurant patrons.
Numerous estimates confirmed motels had been prone to be wherever from one-third to greater than half full — far under the 90%-plus bookings of most years. And metropolis and state officers all however warned vacationers away.
“If folks suppose they’re going to return to Louisiana, wherever, or New Orleans and have interaction within the form of actions they might have pre-pandemic then they’re mistaken and fairly frankly they aren’t welcome right here to try this,” Gov. John Bel Edwards stated at a current information convention.
Freezing or near-freezing temperatures had been within the Tuesday forecast.
If the gang management measures work, the scene might be in begin distinction to Mardi Gras crowds final 12 months that had been later blamed for an early Louisiana outbreak of COVID-19.
Parades additionally had been canceled this 12 months in Cellular, Alabama, which boasts the nation’s oldest Mardi Gras celebrations. There was no plan to shut bars there, however some streets had been to be shut down Tuesday to manage visitors and permit for extra out of doors seating and repair at eating places and bars.
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