After a drastic increase in cases in Summit County and across Colorado, multiple Colorado counties, including Summit County, move to Covid level red. Level red used to be the highest level on the Covid dial. However, before moving to level red, a new level was created; purple. Purple is now the highest level on the dial. Summit County is still one level below Stay at Home orders but now with tighter restrictions for restaurants, lodging and ski areas.
Indoor dining restricted
Level red means no indoor dining at restaurants. Level red allows outdoor dining as well as take out or delivery services. This is a big blow to restaurants. Outdoor dining was a popular option during the summer when the towns closed down Main Streets to give restaurants more space for outdoor dining. Winter will be a bit more of a struggle outdoors. Tents or other structures can be used but it has to be mostly open air or it is the same as indoor dining. It’s hard to keep everyone, and the food, warm on cold winter days with outdoor dining.
One household per rental unit
Lodging is still happening however people from different households are unable to stay together. Bigger homes will feel this change more as one household will be less likely to fill a four bedroom home. Property managers and owners must be more diligent asking lodging guests about their home addresses to try and comply.
Ski area restrictions
Ski areas must reduce capacity. Most in Summit County have reservation systems in place and are already restricting capacity. The public doesn’t really know how many people are able to be on the mountain now but those slots could fill up even faster now that Summit County moves to Covid level red. Especially with limited runs open on the mountain, planning ahead for your ski days is even more important.
Other Covid level red restrictions
Retail shops are restricted to 50% capacity. This is actually higher capacity than it was in level orange. I think 50% capacity should be sufficient to let shoppers enter stores without standing in a line waiting for someone else to go out. Office and gyms have severely limited capacity, down to 10%. For many smaller spaces, one person would only be able to be inside at a time. Calling ahead is definitely necessary before in person visits to offices, gyms or other facilities.
Colorado is a popular winter destination for tourists. I think the tight restrictions are an effort to get the virus under control enough to allow less restrictive options for the holidays. Hopefully that could carry us through ski season keeping all the ski areas, and those businesses that depend on their traffic, open and thriving.