Casper bars handling closing early on New Year’s Eve

Bars are still preparing for customers before New Year’s Eve, despite having to close at 10 PM.
Gaslight Social is one Casper bar preparing for New Year's Eve customers, despite having to...
Gaslight Social is one Casper bar preparing for New Year's Eve customers, despite having to close at 10 PM.(David Graf)
Published: Dec. 31, 2020 at 5:51 PM CST
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CASPER, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - Bars and restaurants in Wyoming have had to navigate all sorts of new challenges amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and the latest challenge is having to be closed now by 10 PM due to COVID-19 restrictions.

That’s put on a damper for one of the most popular drinking nights of the year in New Year’s Eve, but Casper bars are adapting. Chris Hoburka, co-owner of Oil City Beer Company, said they were “fortunate” to be open at all.

“We’ve gotta be mindful of the restrictions and spacing and mask wearing,” said Hoburka.” But our doors are still open. People are still coming in.”

Oil City Beer Company opened in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, so the restrictions are all they’ve ever known. Dan Graham, co-owner of Oil City Beer Company, said it’s “important for customers to feel safe. “If we can show them that we’re being safe and we’re doing the hand sanitizer, the mask wearing, and people will come out and enjoy things as they feel safe,” said Graham.

For New Year’s Eve, Oil City Beer Company is hosting a live music performance and a food truck that will be serving wings.

Gaslight Social is another Casper bar getting ready for New Year’s Eve, and they are running specials all night and have a DJ starting at 6 PM. They’ll have a countdown until 10 PM when it is time for them to close.

Bethanie Nielsen, a Gaslight Social bartender, said she hopes that people still get dressed up and come out. She’s also thankful to not have to work a typical New Year’s Eve shift.

“I’m looking forward to going to sleep before midnight,” said Nielsen. “It’s been a rarity working in the bar industry that I’ve got a New Year’s Eve off or one that I could actually go to sleep before.”

All bars and restaurants are required to close before 10 PM because of COVID-19 restrictions put in place by Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon.

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