Monroe Bar Closed Minutes After Defying Governor’s Order
Well, they tried. But they came up short. The Junkyard Bar in Monroe, in defiance of Governor John Bel Edwards' orders against the opening of bars in parishes with higher than a five percent COVID positivity rate, opened for a brief, twenty five minutes, Tuesday night. Then with only four customers in the bar, he was forced to shut the doors.
In an article originally published by the Louisiana Radio Network, we learn that owner Lane Clark said with bills pilling up he had no choice but to try to open, or else he said he might just have to close his doors for good.
Clark publicized that he would defy the Governor's orders and open, and he did, only to have ATF arrive on scene and inform him that he could either surrender his liquor license, or he could be arrested if he served another beer.
Clark quipped, “You know it doesn’t do me any good to have a license if I can’t open anyway, so we are going to fight through it, we are going to keep fighting.” He went on to plea for other bar owners to follow his lead on the issue, "You know it would nice if the rest of the bars in the state would start opening.” “They are going to pull your license but your license is no good if you are not open anyway.
On a gofundme page created by Kaylee Culpepper, the plight of the establishment is made obvious:
We feel like we provide a place where you can let go, drink and enjoy yourself safely. Instead we are promoting taking alcohol in your vehicles and are being revoked the right to have musical gatherings even outside just because we don’t serve food. If we are relieved of this and it doesn’t cause a decline for us we will donate all proceeds to a veteran charity. We love all of our customers and supporters and miss you dearly already. Save our stages! Save our bartenders! Save our bars! Save our businesses and livelihood ! Support local! We thank you all from the bottom of our hearts and just want to see Downtown Monroe succeed and become a destination. We have been shut down again. Which means how do we keep up when we can’t have our lovely customers come see us? No monies for bills. It doesn’t have to be this way.
A hearing has been set for September 30th in Baton Rouge.