'Elated': As Pa bar restrictions ease, owners and patrons are thrilled to return

The United Kingdom variant is now the most common strain of coronavirus circulating in the United States and the strain has shown to be more transmissible and infectious among younger Americans, which the CDC says has contributed to rising case numbers, in recent weeks.

It turns out almost half of the new cases are in five specific states. Johns Hopkins says Michigan, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey make up 197,000 cases, or about 44 percent of the newest infections.

That hasn’t stopped things from reopening, including bar service.

The drinks are flowing at Gypsy Saloon in Conshohocken, the restaurant hopping now that Pennsylvania has eased bar restrictions.

"People want to go to the bar. I think that’s the biggest thing. You can actually go out to dinner to any of your other favorite restaurants and just have a drink," stated Kim Strengari, Co-Owner of Conshy Girls Restaurant and Catering Group.

That’s right, folks can grab a drink now without having to order food. People can have a seat at the bar and can order an alcoholic beverage past 11:00 p.m.

"I don’t even know if it’s just about money or just your morale, your spirits, seeing your whole restaurant back to being a restaurant again. No to-go boxes everywhere. We have it all organized now. I love it," Strengari commented.

Restaurants and bars definitely needing the boost to stay in business amid the pandemic. Mike Hamilton, the Executive Chef and General Manager at the Great American Pub Conshohocken says they’ve been in survival mode for months.

"We’re tight margins already so having the bar stools back for the 10-2 crowd. The 10-2 crowd is really what pays the bills. So, we could stay afloat without that, yet it’s tough to scrape the nickels and dimes without them spending the dollars at the bar," Hamilton explained.

People are excited and say they’ve anxiously been waiting for the day to arrive.

"I’m elated to finally be able to sit at the bar, relax and have a drink," claimed Joe Larkin.

"It’s feels amazing to have that sense of normalcy coming back," added Tanya Orlin.

Slowly, but surely, and safely, of course.

"Being in the bar business my whole life, it’s like having an old friend back," Strengari remarked.



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