Arkansas’ TempleLive is about to be hit with a cease and desist order over a concert scheduled this week, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced.
The venue was slated to host a show featuring Travis McCready of Bishop Gunn on Friday, May 15 but the concert’s date fell days before the state’s directive to reopen entertainment venues goes into effect. Now, the local government is taking matters into its own hands to stop the violation of the order.
“That concert does not have our approval. It would happen three days before the authorized date, as well as a few other problems,” Hutchinson during a news conference on Monday. “We’ve looked at their plan, and the plan is insufficient as well.”
The gig made headlines for being one of the nation’s first post-lockdown concerts and put in place strict safety measures, including temperature screenings, the required use of face masks and limited bathroom use. TempleLive was also opening up the show to only 229 patrons, a fraction of its 1,100-person total capacity. The governor’s directive limits venues to only allowing 50 people at a time.
“It’s out of time,” Hutchinson said Tuesday after the venue dismissed earlier warnings. “Can you imagine what reaction we would have had across Arkansas if we set the date for May 11 to open up restaurants but a bunch of them just decided to do that on May 5? You can’t just arbitrarily determine when the restrictions are lifted. That is something that is done based upon a public health requirement.”
McCready’s show would have tested the waters of holding socially-distant concerts amid the current pandemic. However, concerts in the near future may take place by way of drive-in as a way to avoid close contact with others. Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino has alluded that this will be the company’s focus having already launched a drive-in tour overseas and more instances popping up around the country.