Bullock closes restaurants, other businesses

The Associated Press
Friday, March 20, 2020
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The above graphic shows the confirmed cases of the coronavirus throughout the state. MONTANA FREE PRESS GRAPHIC

Montana’s governor ordered bars, restaurants, movie theaters, gyms and other gathering places statewide to close Friday and braced the state for an extended shutdown of many public functions in the rush to stem the spread of the corona virus.

The directive from Gov. Steve Bullock came after the first case of illness was reported from a rural area. The closure order goes into effect at 8 p.m. Friday and was set to expire in one week. But Bullock’s office said the date was likely to be extended, as would a shutdown of schools that’s also set to expire next week.

Some communities already had shut down bars, restaurants and other venues in recent days as officials stepped up efforts to limit people from interacting, particularly in population centers. But many rural areas of the state were not included in the closures.

Bullock said consultations with health officials convinced him more needed to be done.

“We face extraordinary health risks __ and with it even further risks to our economic and social wellbeing, if we do not act now,” he said. “Both young and older Montanans, in urban and rural communities, have tested positive for coronavirus, making it even more clear that this virus impacts us all.”

The rural area case involves a female patient in her 70s from Roosevelt County who acquired the virus during a recent international trip, officials said.

Fifteen positive cases have been reported in Montana, including in the population centers of Yellowstone, Gallatin, Missoula, Silver Bow and Lewis and Clark counties.

Officials in states with higher numbers of cases have gone further in restricting public movements. In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday said residents should stay at home indefinitely and venture outside only for essential jobs, errands and exercise.

For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms.

But for the elderly and people with existing conditions, it can cause more severe illness. The vast majority of those who are infected recover.

Montana Lt. Gov. Mike Cooney, who is running in the Democratic gubernatorial primary in hopes of succeeding Bullock, is due to come out of a precautionary self-quarantine for the virus on Saturday, said Marissa Perry, a spokeswoman for the governor’s office.

Cooney attended a Board of Regents meeting on March 5 in Dillon with an individual who later tested positive for the virus. Cooney tested negative and has been working at home since he found out about the potential exposure on March 14, Perry said.

COVID-19 Public Health Monitoring and Testing

— Individuals monitored by public health: 30

— Individuals who have completed monitoring process: 28

— Individuals who remain under monitoring: 2

— Persons tested for COVID-19: 947

— Persons with negative results: 931

— Persons with positive results: 16

*** Information provided by Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services

Miles City restaurants and bars lobby closure list


— 600 cafe and hole in the wall family dining, Food to go for seniors still going, take out only, 11 a.m. m w and f. Starting at 8 p.m. tonight restaurant will be closed other than senior meals.

— Airport Inn, closed

— Black Iron, unable to reach by press time

— City Brew, take out and drive thru

— Four-B’s, Restaurant closed

— Gallaghers, To-go orders and curbside service

— Little Caesars, Take out only

— Mainstreet Grind, take out and delivery

— Mexico Lindo, take out and delivery only

— New Hunan, Carry out and delivery 4-9 p.m.

— Scoop MT, Unable to reach by press time

— Seabeck Pizza, Unable to reach by press time

— Spoon Full, no art classes, still carry out and drive thru

— The Ruby, take out and drive thru

— Tilt Wurks, closing at 8 p.m.

— Town and Country Club, still doing tonights open dining until 8 p.m., spacing tables out so they are 6-feet apart, carry-out orders. Reassessing on Monday, and hoping to at least do Friday night carry out.

— Vintage and Rustics in Montana, Might do a pick up service or drop off service. Going to have to take it day by day.

Bars and Casinos:

— Bison Bar, Closed

— Bucking Horse Saloon, Unable to reach by press time

— Club Royale, closing at 3:30 p.m.

— Gold Dust Casino and Liquor Store, closing at 8 p.m., as of right now no carry out.

— Golden Spur Sports Bar, closing at 8 p.m

— Lucky Lil’s and Magic Diamond, closing at 2 p.m.

— Montana Bar and Tubb’s Pub, Closing at 8 p.m., doing take out and carry out

— Parker’s Super Service, closing at 8 p.m.

— Silver Star, Closing at 5p.m.

— Tongue River Winery, doing phone orders and door pick up

— Trails Inn, Mama Stella’s Pizza, and Range Riders Cafe, Take out and delivery, still have to-go crowlers (to-go cans of craft beers).

— Treasure Cove, Closing at 8 p.m.

— Yellowstone Tavern, take out but dining room and casino will be closing down

Fast Food Restaurants:

— Arbys, Carry out and drive thru.

— Dairy Queen,carry out, drive thru and walk up orders

— KFC/A&W, Take out, drive thru

— McDonalds, Lobby closed, drive thru opened, taking walk up orders for drivers who can’t get through the drive thru.

— Pizza Hut, Dining room closed, carry out and delivery only.

— Subway, Drive thru, carry out, walk ups

— Taco Johns,Lobby closed, drive thru opened and willing to take walk up order

— Wendy’s, carry out only, drive thru open