Social distancing in Montreal…
For the first time in our 8.5-year history, we will not be posting our daily To-Do List today. (Our first To-Do List was posted the day our site launched, July 16, 2012, and we haven’t missed one of the 2,799 days since.)
The To-Do List will be on hold for the next two weeks, through Sunday, March 29. Given increasing government and community efforts in Montreal and across Canada (and the world) to curb the spread of Coronavirus via “social distancing,” we feel it would be irresponsible to continue to recommend social gatherings. Not to mention that the actual number of organized events has dwindled rapidly.
After the succession of announcements about local event cancellations and government-mandated temporary closures on Thursday — of cultural and sports venues with capacities over 250, as well as a host of municipal facilities (from pools and skating arenas to the Botanical Gardens and Planetarium) — Quebec culture/communications minister Nathalie Roy announced yesterday that the province is asking ALL show venues to suspend activity for 30 days. The Museum of Fine Arts and the Musée des arts contemporain are closed through March 29, as are BAnQ libraries across Quebec.
This is of course placing a huge strain on the music and art communities. While we await the details of a federal stimulus package (that has promised to help small businesses), the provincial government is working on a plan to support artists.
For the moment, most local restaurants, cafés and bars appear to be remaining open. One notable exceptions is Joe Beef — the owners announced their indefinite closure yesterday; satellite spots Liverpool House, Vin Papillon, Vinette and Mckiernan will also be shuttered, though Mckiernan will offer delivery service as of Tuesday.
Movie theatres are staying open, for now.
Cult MTL will keep you updated about closures and reopenings of entertainment and cultural spaces, as well as community support pop-ups and quality home entertainment to offset encroaching cabin fever.
To all our readers, in Montreal and elsewhere: stay safe, stay healthy, stay optimistic. We’ll get through this together. ■
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