Kid Rock's bar on Nashville's Lower Broadway was one of over 10 businesses issued a citation for violating public health orders related to COVID-19 on Friday, according to the Metro Public Health Department. WKRN reports that Kid Rock's Big Ass Honky Tonk & Rock 'n' Roll Steakhouse was issued a citation for being out of compliance with Public Health Emergency Order 6, which pertains to live music.
Dr. Michael Caldwell, Director of the Metro Public Health Department, visited the bar after receiving a complaint on Friday night and the citation was issued on Saturday night. A decision on the amount of the fine will be made during a court appearance. In addition to Rock's bar, 13 other businesses were cited for being out of compliance with Public Health Emergency Order 4 and Order 6, the former of which requires establishments to post signage asking customers to wear a facial covering and employees to wear a facial covering while interacting with others. Over the weekend, a photo of Rock's bar packed with unmasked patrons went viral, and WSMV reports that the bar was cited for serving people seated at the bar and failing to observe proper social distancing inside.
Last night at Kid Rock’s Big Honky Tonk and Rock n’ Roll Steakhouse in Nashville, TN. Nashville is in phase 2, allowing restaurants and retail stores to open at 75 percent capacity, while bars remain closed. How is this even legal? #COVID #coronavirus pic.twitter.com/bg3JG7h6cy— Sara O'Bannon (@Ovation_Girl) June 14, 2020
In March, when businesses in Nashville were ordered to temporarily close by Nashville mayor John Cooper due to the coronavirus pandemic, the owner of Kid Rock's Big Ass Honky Tonk & Rock 'n' Roll Steakhouse initially refused to do so. "We appreciate the efforts of Mayor Cooper to combat the COVID-19 virus," Steve Smith, who owns Kid Rock's bar as well as several other venues on Broadway, said in a statement at the time, "but unless there’s a statewide mandate that directs all bars and restaurants to be closed (which is happening in multiple cities across the country) the request made by Mayor Cooper is unconstitutional as he is targeting a select group of businesses."
One day later, after public pressure, the bar closed. "Mr. Smith and his establishments are voluntarily complying with the directives of the CDC and local government," Smith's attorney Steve Meisner told Entertainment Weekly. "We are all very concerned for the heath and welfare of the Nashville community. We are equally concerned with the ability of our 800+ employees to weather this event with no pay. The hospitability industry is taking a huge hit."