Skip to main content

Minneapolis keeps bar seating restrictions as state eases up on rules

Patrons still won't be able to sit at bars due to COVID-19.

Though some of Minnesota's COVID-19 restrictions are being relaxed, at least one will remain in place in its biggest city. 

On Friday, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey announced that the city will not be rescinding the local emergency regulation that prohibits sitting at bars — even though it will be allowed statewide next starting week.

"The decision to leave the restrictions in place was made to improve the likelihood of restaurants and bars remaining operational instead of needing to close down due to another surge in cases," the city said in a news released.

The city added that the decision "will be reviewed in two weeks." 

This comes as Gov. Tim Walz eases the state's coronavirus restrictions. Effective Monday, parties of two will be able to sit at bar counters again, while indoor dining can open at 50% capacity, with a maximum of 150 people. 

Minneapolis will allow indoor dining as well, but according to the release, officials are sticking with the bar restriction because "local data suggests elimination of seating at the bar counter helped decrease the number of outbreaks in the City." 

This is partly in anticipation of "an increase in COVID-19 cases following recent indoor holiday gatherings." 

“Our communities and businesses have made extraordinary sacrifice, and this approach will best honor that sacrifice by making it more likely bars and restaurants can stay open while keeping customers and workers healthy," Mayor Frey said in a statement.

If you want to read more about the city's COVID-19 restrictions, you can click right here. Additionally, here's more about the easing of statewide measures happening Monday. 

Next Up


Grocery store beer sales? MN House hears nearly 30 proposals to update liquor laws

Calls to change the state's liquor laws grew louder during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Screen Shot 2021-10-28 at 7.57.25 AM

3 people found dead inside home in Farmington

Police were conducting a welfare check when they found three people dead inside the home.

Screen Shot 2021-10-28 at 7.26.58 AM

Headstones pushed over, smashed by vandals at cemetery in Alexandria

Police have released images of a vehicle they believe is connected to the case.


Puppies abandoned at Chaska golf course

It's illegal to abandon animals in Minnesota.

Karl-Anthony Towns

Post Bucks win, KAT says “I play with f****** passion”

Towns was asked how he controls his emotions on the court.

D'Angelo Russell

Wolves rebound with statement win against Bucks

D'Angelo Russell and the Timberwolves bounced back with a win over the defending champs.

Screen Shot 2021-10-27 at 7.08.20 PM

Train carrying ethanol derails in southern Minnesota

The State Fire Marshal has sent in experts to help with the situation.


Motorcyclist dies a month after striking deer in Minnesota

The crash happened north of Mankato near the small town of Norseland.

fire pixabay stock

House explosion kills 1, severely injures another

Authorities described the home as "completely destroyed."

Kotyza-Witthuhn screengrab

Watch: MN lawmaker 'attacked' by giggling child during live hearing

This has to be the most adorable moment ever from a Commerce Finance and Policy Committee hearing, right?

Sloane Martin

Sloane Martin leaving WCCO Radio for bigger role with Big Ten Network

Martin has been a staple at WCCO Radio since Election Day 2016.

Flickr - Xcel Energy truck - Tony Webster

Xcel Energy wants to raise MN customers' electricity rates

If approved, rates go up by an average of $18.50 a month for customers.


Governor Tim Walz

Report: Walz could halt reopenings again if COVID-19 spikes

Statewide restrictions are due to ease up on Monday.

Despite pleas for social distancing, Minnesotans still crowding into bars

There are calls for city and state leaders to impose tougher lockdowns.

Bar beer

MDH to ramp up enforcement of bars violating COVID-19 protocols

The state received over a hundred complaints this week.

Bar beer

Minneapolis lifts COVID restriction limiting bar service

The city kept the ban in place while statewide restrictions were loosened in January.

face mask

Wisconsin governor tightens restrictions on bars, stores as COVID-19 cases soar

Wisconsin is one of the country's worst hotspots or COVID-19 cases.

Governor Tim Walz

Walz to announce loosening of restrictions on indoor dining Wednesday

Indoor dining service has been banned since Nov. 18 amid spiraling COVID-19 cases, which have since declined.

Cowboy Jacks

List of 19 bars in Minnesota linked to COVID-19 outbreaks

The majority of cases linked to the bars are young adults.