The City of Bakersfield is excited to announce that local businesses are taking advantage of a new program aimed at helping them find creative ways to re-open and provide services to the public in a safe, health-conscious way during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tina Marie's Downtown Cafe at the corner of Chester Avenue and 20th Street is the first business to be approved for and use the City's new "COVID-19 Special Event Permit."
The permit allows approved businesses to create expanded seating to accommodate social distancing by temporarily closing public streets and sidewalks as well as parking lots on private property to be used for dining and vending space.
Tina Marie's owner, Tina Brown, said she was happy the City offered such a solution.
"I had a hunch that outdoor dining would be more comfortable for the residents of Bakersfield because of COVID," Brown said. "A lot of my customer and clientele said that outdoors, they'd feel a little more comfortable."
Brown added that the restaurant used the permit for extra seating on Father's Day, June 21, and are currently planning to use the permit mainly during the weekend.
Tina Marie's isn't the only business to take advantage of this opportunity, as several other operations are currently in the process of completing the permit application.
The COVID-19 Special Event Permit is made possible through the City’s Emergency Declaration, issued on March 19, 2020. The COVID-19 Special Event Permit will be available throughout the duration of the Emergency Declaration.
Businesses wishing to take advantage of this assistance can apply for the permit here and by following the steps and safety criteria outlined in the accompanying document in the PDF linked below.
( View PDF )