WORTHINGTON, Ohio (WCMH) — Beginning next week, guests at three central Ohio establishments will be required to show they are fully vaccinated from COVID-19, or that they have tested negative for the virus within the past 48 hours before being allowed inside.
The policy will change at Natalie’s Coal Fired Pizza, Natalie’s Grandview, and The Light of Seven Matchsticks.
Charlie Jackson, who owns all three businesses with his daughter, said the change was made in an effort to keep patrons, staff, and musicians safe while the number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise.
“I think as we all looked at the numbers daily and sleeping on it a few nights, I think we all kind of came to the conclusion that this is the right decision for us,” Jackson said. “Maybe not everyone, but our business model with live music, with people gathering in the numbers that we want them to, we just feel like that’s the safest way to do it.”
As part of the policy change, masks will be strongly advised for everyone when not eating or drinking.
Jackson said the response to the policy change has been overwhelmingly positive so far, but there are some who are angry about it.
“I respect their opinion,” he said. “We’re not going to argue with anyone. We’re just going to say this is what we feel like we need to do, and there’s places that I’m sure you can go that don’t have these requirements and it’s a free country. You can go and support the businesses that you want to.”
The policy at the three businesses will change starting Wednesday, Aug. 11.
Jackson said patrons can show their vaccination card or a photo of it as proof they are vaccinated.