Gov. Jared Polis announced Monday that beginning today all restaurants and bars in Colorado will be closed to dine-in service and limited to only takeout and delivery service for at least the next 30 days in an effort to fight the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

“The best information we have is three to five days behind what is actually happening on the ground. We’re doing our best to extrapolate, to predict, to use modeling, but the data is a trailing indicator in terms of positives,” Polis said.

“These steps are very painful for for the state and they might be an inconvenience for you as a customer, but imagine how difficult they are for the workers and owners of these establishments. The goal is to reduce the severity and duration of this public health crisis.”

He also announced closing of large places of gathering, which will include gyms, theaters and casinos.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock made the same announcement for Denver earlier in the day.

Polis also suggested people take a break and walk outside to try to keep from getting overwhelmed with all of the news.

“It’s bad but we’re going to get through it,” Polis said. “Just because we can’t be in the same room doesn’t mean this crisis can’t bring us together.”

Andrea Carlstrom, director of Chaffee County Public Health, said she and her department are working with local retail food establishments on ways they can provide takeout and delivery options.

“We are looking for creative solutions to this problem,” Carlstrom said. “We hope to set them up for success as long as takeout and delivery options are viable.”

Valery Hasselbrink of Salida Elks Lodge No. 808 said the lodge will be closing.

“Because of what Gov. Polis has announced, we have decided to close down the Elks Lodge,” Hasselbrink said. “That includes the bar, bingo and all events until further notice.”

From our sister paper The Mountain Mail at

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