College Hill responds to social media criticism of large bar crowds

NI STAFF, NI Editors

In a press release issued on Wednesday afternoon, the College Hill Partnership responded to recent backlash on social media regarding large bar crowds.

Executive Director Kathryn Sogard commended College Hill’s business owners who “have willingly stepped up to the challenge COVID-19 has brought us.”

In the release, the Partnership called for a response from city and state leaders, emphasizing that the College Hill businesses lack the authority to mandate masks or social distancing on a public sidewalk outside their buildings.

“Without leadership from the City, County, or the State on mask mandates and the inability for private businesses to enforce any regulation outside of their four walls, including social distancing on the public property, we find ourselves in the current situation,” the release stated. “Having no mandates leaves these practices up to each visitor who chooses to head to the Hill or any other place.”

Currently bars and restaurants in Iowa are allowed to remain open while following social distancing measures. Unlike Des Moines and Iowa City, Cedar Falls has not implemented a mask mandate.