Later this week, country rock musician Travis McCready was set to play the first official concert since lockdown began in mid-March. Ticketmaster were selling 229 tickets to the 1,000 seat venue, and creating "fan pods" to ensure fans can keep social distancing. Tickets were sold in packs of two to six and all but two packs were sold out when we checked last night. But now, the government is stepping in and stopping the show.
The state's governor, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said during a news conference on Tuesday that they will be sending the venue a cease and desist, adding "You can’t just arbitrarily determine when the restrictions are lifted. That is something that is done based on a public health requirement."
The venue went through zero precautions with local officials before announcing the event. "Clearly, it is three days before we determined it was an appropriate time to open up to a limited capacity in some of those informal venues, and even if you’re going to have 250 people at a venue, you still have to have a specific plan that would be approved by the Department of Health. None of that was done in this case," Hutchinson said.
The Arkansas Department of Health will be lifting restrictions on social gatherings a few days after the concert was scheduled, on May 18th with NBC news reporting "indoor venues could hold events with 50 people or fewer, and must adhere to other guidelines like arranging seating 6 feet apart. Venues that wanted to hold events with more than 50 people must be operating at less than 34 percent capacity and also submit a plan to the department."
As of this writing, tickets for the show are still available on Ticketmaster.
— Temple Live (@templelivefsm) April 27, 2020