As of Christmas Eve, venues like the ENMAX Centre that have capacities over 1,000 people will have to limit that to 50 per cent. That also restriction prompted the January concert for Dierks Bentley to be cancelled.
“It is very disappointing — that one was especially disappointing,” said Kim Gallucci, general manager for the ENMAX Centre. “It was a great show to have but we do understand though, the tours can’t operate on a 50 per cent capacity.”
Gallucci said the added health measure of no longer allowing food or drinks to be served in those venues is a major financial blow.
“Food and beverage is one of our main revenue streams for all events, concerts, hockey games, you name it. It’s one of our main ones.”
Gallucci said it’s a loss of revenue and hours for staff with the ENMAX employing roughly 80 to 110 people in that department alone.
The Lethbridge Hurricanes will also be limiting ticket sales. After accounting for season ticket holders, there will be just over 500 tickets available for each game.
“Especially after last year and playing with no fans in the building, this has been quite a nice change for them so you know, it affects the atmosphere, obviously,” said Terry Huisman, general manager of business operations with the Hurricanes.
For more information on the capacity limits and how that might affect an upcoming event you have tickets for, you can visit the ENMAX Centre website.
Businesses following the Restrictions Exemption Program like bars and restaurants will have to limit tables to 10 people, with no mingling amongst groups. Alcohol service must end at 11 p.m.
Vicky Vanden Hoek owns Honkers Pub & Eatery and said cancellations for Christmas gatherings have already started.
“We are back to the phones ringing and we have cancelled a couple of events already and we are going to be postponing our karaoke that’s on a Thursday nights.”
Vanden Hoek added she is grateful to be open, but worries for her staff who could see fewer hours if cancellations keep coming and the establishment has to limit its hours due to a slow down of patrons.
Premier Jason Kenney announced the new restrictions Tuesday afternoon amid a surge in COVID-19 cases, driven by the Omicron variant of concern.
“More must be done urgently to protect our health-care system from the potential threat of Omicron,” Kenney said Tuesday.
Minister Copping details new COVID-19 restrictions to fight the Omicron variant
Alberta reported 1,346 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, a daily figure not seen in the province since early October.
The province also reported a total of 2,131 Omicron variant cases, a rise of 522 from the day before.
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