ASHTABULA COUNTY, Ohio — Three Ashtabula County establishments were cited Friday night and early Saturday morning for violating state COVID-19 health orders, according to the Ohio Investigative Unit.
Agents, assisted by deputies from the Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Office, visited The Corner Bar in Austinburg around 10:35 p.m. where they observed guests closely congregating and sitting at consecutive seats at the bar while other customers stood behind them waiting to order.
Guests were permitted to stand and congregate with each other while drinking and many of the staff and customers were not wearing facial coverings or masks. There was little to no social distancing measure or physical barriers in place, OIU said.
The Corner Bar was cited for improper conduct – disorderly activity. The bar was previously cited in August for violating the state’s alcohol curfew and received a five-day suspension of its liquor license with the option to pay a $500 fine in lieu of the suspension.
About an hour later, around 11:35 p.m., agents and deputies visited Rare Cherry in Ashtabula where they observed little to no social distancing measures or physical barriers in place.
Guests were seen closely congregating throughout the premises, sitting at consecutive seats at the bar while others stood behind them to order, and standing and congregating while drinking, according to OIU.
Rare Cherry was issued a citation for improper conduct – disorderly activity.
OIU agents and deputies also visited Nave Lounge & Entertainment in Ashtabula around 12:10 a.m. where they observed guests congregating closely together throughout the premises.
Customers sat at consecutive seats at the bar while others stood behind them waiting to order. Other customers were seen standing and congregating near the pool table and patio entry while drinking and little to no social distancing measures or physical barriers were in place. Most of the customers and staff were not wearing facial coverings, OIU said.
Nave Lounge & Entertainment was cited for improper conduct – disorderly activity.
All three establishments will have their cases heard before the Ohio Liquor Control Commission and face potential penalties, including fines and/or the suspension or revocation of their liquor permits.