WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Some large venues in Sedgwick County said the proposed new emergency order calling for venues that hold more than 2,000 people will be prohibited, and limiting mass gatherings to 15, would further delay their return to business.
Most large venues have been closed since March. The focus at this point is coming up with alternative ways to stay afloat until things get better.
It’s been four months since concert venue Wave has opened it’s doors to crowds of live music fans.
“We were the first to close we’re going to be the last to reopen,” said Adam Hartke, operating partner Wave and Cotillion.
Hartke said he had little hope concerts would happen this year anyways.
“I think that we’re going to see a lot of open and shut open and shut type economy for the next six to 12 months, and I think that means venues are going to remain closed through all this,” said Hartke.
Plus with live music tours on hold, he said venues are taking a 98% hit in lost revenue. He said Wave along with other venues around the country and the National Independent Venue Association are lobbying Washington to provide federal relief to help stay afloat. It’s part of a national campaign called Save Our Stages.
With the spike in cases around the county, he feels banning large gatherings is the right move.
“I think anything we can do to get through this crisis in a reasonable educated manner is imperative,” said Hartke.
Over at the Orpheum Theatre, it’s offering a live video concert series called Orpheum Live featuring local artists Injoy Fountain, Terry Quiett Band, and Jenny Wood.
“When we can’t invite people into the theatre, we thought this was the next best thing,” said Mallory Rine, marketing manager.
All proceeds will go to the Orpheum Recovery Fund to help the theatre recover from the financial losses from being closed for four months and to help with the reopening. The theatre said it will continue to follow the guidelines and believe gathering limits are what’s best to stop the spread.
“We get it under control that’s when we’re one step closer to being able to reopen,” said Rine.