Bowling alley hopes new COVID19 rules in Wyandotte County don't put business in the gutter

Posted at 6:08 AM, Nov 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-20 07:08:36-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A bowling alley is bracing for new rules from Wyandotte County aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19.

The mandate from Wyandotte County went into effect Friday and limits the size of crowds in businesses as well as lays out face covering rules and social distancing standards.

At KC Bowl, owner Rick Thurber said since the start of the pandemic, mask wearing and social distancing have been required inside his bowling alley.

The portion of the mandate that will affect his business is the required 50 percent occupancy cap and 10 p.m. closing time.

“It’s just making it a real challenge," Thurber said. "The 50 percent we can live with, and believe me, we want to do everything we can to get this thing over with and have nobody come down with this, but we got to be able to stay open.”

Thurber said business is down around 30 percent since the pandemic started.

The new county-wide rules come at a time when Thurber said business usually starts to pick up during the colder weather months.

The Kansas City, Kansas, businessman has owned his bowling alley for 10 years and said his biggest problem with the new county rule is the closing time for businesses and the lack of a consistent standard across the state.

“I wish we could get uniform in how we’re doing it. I don’t know how it can be different in Johnson County and Leavenworth County than it is here in Wyandotte County," Thurber said.

He fears possible customers may just go to a neighboring county with looser restrictions.