food & drink

How Federal Extension of Social Distancing Guidelines Could Impact Boston Restaurants

Does Sunday's order mean the end date for restaurant restrictions in Massachusetts will be extended?

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Sunday evening, the White House extended the federal social distancing guidelines to April 30, which will likely have repercussions for local rulings, including the current restrictions on restaurants and bars in the local area.

Currently, dining and drinking spots in the Greater Boston area and the rest of Massachusetts are only allowed to offer takeout/delivery through April 6, with other New England states having similar mandates, though with differing end dates.

Now that the nationwide social distancing guidelines will be in place for another 30 days or so, this could cause Gov. Charlie Baker to revisit the end date for restaurant (and other) restrictions in this state, though nothing has been decided at the time of this writing. While a possible extension of the lifting of the restrictions probably won't come as a surprise to many, the fact that the current April 6 end date has already been seen as potentially disastrous to restaurants would surely lead to even more worries by both restaurant owners and workers, so Baker's actions over the coming days will be closely watched, including his press conferences such as the one coming early Monday afternoon.

During the closure of dine-in services at all Massachusetts restaurants, some establishments are finding new ways to serve customers.

On March 17, the restaurant restrictions for Massachusetts officially went into place, with some local dining and drinking spots deciding to completely shut down for the time being while others have opted for the takeout/delivery route--including places that had never focused on either option in the past.

by Marc Hurwitz (Also follow us on Twitter at @hiddenboston)

[A related post from our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants): List of Restaurant Closings and Openings in the Boston Area]

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