The first socially distanced concert ever is scheduled to take place in two days, at TempleLive in Fort Smith, Arkansas, however the plan has come under criticism by the state’s governor Asa Hutchinson, who called the event non compliant with the state’s stay-at-home order. The state’s Department of Health has now called on the event, which was supposed to host musician Travis McCready of Bishop Gunn, to cease and desist.
This latest announcement comes after Ticketmaster outlined their plans for the event, which would sit 229 people in a 1,100 seat venue, six feet apart in groups of “fan pods.” While fans could sit with each other in groups, these “fan pods” would intermingling with other groups in spaces that are six feet apart. In addition, face masks will be mandatory for the event, while attendees will have their temperatures checked at the door, with all hallways and corridors set to be one-way only. In addition there will be a 10-person limit for each bathroom, with each facility equipped with hands free soap and paper towel dispensers.
“That concert does not have our approval. It would happen three days before the authorized date, as well as a few other problems.” Hutchinson told reporters on Monday. “We’ve looked at their plan, and the plan is insufficient as well.”
According to Pitchfork, Mike Brown a representative from TempleLive, stated that the event will continue despite these warnings. In turn, the state’s Department of Finance representative Scott Hardin suggested that Arkansas’ Alcohol Beverage Control can pull the venue’s liquor license as a result.
According to Fort Smith Mayor George B. McGill, the city will be supporting the state’s policy for reopening concerts.