A Colorado COVID-19 Event Update: Dancing and Gathering in 2021
Monday, March 1
Hi Calluna Clients, Vendors and Community,
If you’ve been here awhile, you know we’ve been committed to navigating pandemic-wedding-planning each step of the way with you. Since the early days of shut down (almost one year ago to date) the Calluna Events team has been navigating the splash and corresponding ripples of this virus alongside the wedding industry as best we can – immersing ourselves in policy, news, education, webinars, industry conversations, attorney and legal contractual reviews, hours upon hours on the phone with our couples, our vendors, our community, our family and friends so we can be the best possible resource and advocate throughout this unique (and trying) time. We’re committed to becoming experts in COVID-19 and all that it means for the wedding community, and we want to share that knowledge.
It’s been awhile since we’ve shared an industry update but today it is with great pleasure and extreme excitement that we share some very positive news about the future of the event industry here in Colorado! As many of you have heard, the Colorado Event Alliance (CEA) has been working tirelessly as advocates to help get the wedding/hospitality industry back on its feet so that we can celebrate you and your love safely. We are deeply grateful indebted to the CEA for the excellent work they’ve been doing in advocating at the highest legislative levels with both our local state and federal officials.
If you’d like to support this committee that has been a lifeline to our event industry, please consider donating to the frontline event workers who have been financially impacted by this pandemic.
Update #1: Dancing
If you’ve been following along throughout 2020 and into Q1 of 2021, shared dance floors have been prohibited in Colorado as a means to reduce the spread of COVID-19. As of Friday 2/26/21 we are thrilled to share dancing is now allowed at all events! As it stands today, dancing is strictly limited to no more than six persons dancing together from the same party. Dancing parties must remain six feet from other persons and all must follow current mask mandates. For weddings specifically, the following dances are expressly allowed: the couples’ first dance and the parent’s dances.
This information has been updated on the state’s website and effective immediately. There is no max capacity on the dance floor so long as distancing requirements are met or unless the local authority issues a more restrictive rule. This will continue to evolve and we will keep you well informed on how this changes over the coming months. Many of you may be wondering (and one of our first questions!) if the wedding couple can freely dance with their guests. Based on the guidance we’ve received the answer is technically no (with the exception of each other, their parents and their “party pod” of six or fewer people. That said, in full transparency, we don’t expect too much enforcement on wedding couple behavior, vis-a-via the rest of the guests, but will continue to work together with our venue and vendor partners to comply with all guidance and regulations.
While these regulations surrounding dance floors and dancing at events still requires some creativity, questions and clarification, it’s a great improvement from what we’ve been seeing to date in this pandemic. A reminder that as recent as last Thursday dance floors were not allowed at all in Colorado! Like all COVID response and regulations, this guidance will be re-evaluated every month moving forward as has been the case with all COVID restrictions coming out of the Governor’s office.
TLDR; Put your dancing shoes on, Colorado! Let’s boogie!
Update #2: Vaccine Rollout and Gathering (Capacity) Restrictions
Colorado is in its initial stages of a Dial 3.0 consideration which includes a reevaluation of “hard capacity limits.” Based on the current expectation of vaccinations and with the recent addition & FDA approval of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine, Colorado is expected to reach “herd immunity” by late spring, whereas previously it was early fall. This is phenomenal news! Vaccines have been successfully rolling out to Phase 1A – 1B.2 (Health care workers, Coloradans 65+, Educators, State officials) and we have moved into 1B.3 on March 5 to include 60+, frontline workers in grocery and agriculture etc.
With the anticipated adoption of Dial 3.0 on April 1, all hard caps on capacities will be removed. This means when states a percentage capacity, it will be based off the full venue capacity, not up to a concrete number (ie. 500 person venue capacity means 250 people guests allowed in attendance). We are expecting a percentage increasing 10% every month (May = 60% capacity, June = 70% capacity, July = 80% capacity, etc.) meaning that by mid-summer, most venues and businesses expect to be back to business as usual with mask mandates and social distancing guidelines still in place.
Outdoor, tented and private residence events are still in active discussion without specific guidance but we expect it to follow indoor event guidance with the removal of numerical caps. Venue-specific capacity guidelines would be applied to the 50% guidance and higher percentages moving forward. For private residence weddings that are outdoors, we expect the 6’ social distancing of tables will still be in effect and enforced.
A few other notable updates:
• From July onward, we anticipate a re-evaluation of social distancing requirements due to mass vaccination from 6ft to 3ft.
• Seating for Events matches Restaurants. Parties of 10 or fewer may be seated together 6′ away from other parties.
• If performers are masked or there is a plexiglass or similar barrier, performers can be placed 12’ from attendees. If performers are unmasked and there is no barrier, performers must remain 25 feet from attendees.
• From now through April 1, Level Yellow has increased its cap to include 50% capacity or 50 people with no “social distancing calculator” or up to 150 with the calculator (previously 100 people).
• Last Call for alcohol times have been changed. Level Orange is 12AM, Level Yellow is 1AM, Level Green & Blue is 2AM.
It’s important to note the success of the rollout and advancement above will be dependent on continued mask-wearing, continued social distancing, and the majority of Americans getting the vaccine so we can reach herd immunity sooner. Together with a strong vaccine rollout the event industry will continue to see progress on reopening and getting back to doing what we love and helping our couples celebrate their love with as many of their friends and family as possible!
We cannot thank you all enough for your grace, tenacity, and perseverance while navigating this “new normal.” We know there have been many tough conversations, lots of tears, and several moments of frustration as the situation changes daily but today was a huge step forward in returning to our “old normal” and we cannot wait to be out on the dance floor with you and your families to celebrate!