Platteville bar packed shortly after "Safer at Home" gets blocked

Published: May. 14, 2020 at 7:16 AM CDT
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A bar in downtown Platteville posted a video on Twitter showing the establishment packed with people shortly after the “Safer at Home” order was struck down by the Wisconsin Supreme Court Wednesday.

Nick’s Bar on 2nd Street posted the 36-second video around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, just hours after the order was blocked. The video shows people sitting at every seat at the bar, and multiple people standing against the wall. It appears from the video that social distancing is not being practiced, and that no one is seen wearing a mask.

There is banner attached to the video that says “45 minutes after the bars open in Wisconsin….”

NBC15 News reached out to the bar through Facebook, and we received a response saying: "I've gotten some death threats and a lot of hate sent my way this morning."

The video has received hundreds of retweets and replies along with thousands of viewers and likes.

NBC15's Brittney Ermon ventured out to Platteville Thursday, and though the owner of Nick's still declined to be interviewed, talked with a bar owner a few buildings down.

Dale Jacobs, owner of Brother's On Second, says that "Nick was feeling the pinch in the last eight weeks, like every other bar in Wisconsin. He just felt it was an innocent picture, I'm sure," referring the video posted to Twitter.

Jacob's bar also opened on the same night as Nick's, but he says that "considering Nick's is a very small bar, [that] the pictures can be a little deceiving."

"Whose to say what's right or who's right - or who's wrong," Jacobs says. But he adds that some precautions might have been made: "I think they should have been social distancing, and maybe what they were doing wasn't proper to do."

Elsewhere in Platteville, Jason Ruud got a phone call bars were opening Thursday night, so he made his way to a different bar, where patrons practiced social distancing.

"There was a chair in between either one of us at the bar, and then over at the [bar], School Girls, we had 'distancing dancing.'" Ruud says.

"I feel it's great they're open, but it's not appropriate for others to judge how others choose to live," says Ruud.

Jacobs meanwhile says overall times have been tough, and he's glad to be back in business. "Relief that we're back open with cash flow, it's just been frustrating," he says.

Jacobs says his customer's health is his main priority.