New orders regulate restaurants, bars, and nightclubs starting this Thursday

An Emergency Order of Local Health Officer has been issued for Topeka and Shawnee County beginning Thursday, July 9 at 12:01 a.m. This proactive public health order is issued to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on the Shawnee County community.

A sharp increase in cases has been identified and linked back to bar establishments. Shawnee County Health Officer, Dr. Pezzino consulted with some local owners and operators of bars and restaurants in Shawnee County over the past week to discuss potential changes and how to minimize their impact while preserving the public health goals. As such, he has adopted the following local requirements which can be found on our Shawnee County website at The document contains the following restrictions for Shawnee County Restaurants, Bars, and Night Clubs.

  • Can operate between the hours of 06:00 AM to 11:00 PM on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and 6:00 AM to 12:00 AM on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
  • Between the hours of 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM every day, each establishment shall close its dine-in service. During that time establishments shall conduct deep cleaning and sanitation, and can only operate via curb pick-up, home delivery, or outdoor service like a patio. In addition, routine cleaning and sanitation are required throughout the day, as needed.
  • Establishments with a maximum capacity set forth by the Fire Marshall of greater than 100 people can only operate at 50% of that capacity.
  • Service or consumption of food or drinks at a counter/bar or in standing-only areas is prohibited. Consumption of food and beverages shall only take place at a table via seated service.
  • Dance floors (including but not limited to temporary spaces obtained by removing tables or other objects for the purpose to allow people to dance) shall be closed due to the difficulty of maintaining social distance and enforcing mass gathering limits.

Questions regarding the Emergency Order can be sent to [email protected] or call 785.251.4848.