5 Tips for a Socially Distanced Patio Season

Here are some things to know before you hit up your first patio

June 5, 2020
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Patio season is officially underway and it's been pretty obvious that Minnesotans have been itching to get out of lockdown. 

Mandy here; and just this week alone, I've been to three different restaurant patios. 

Here's what I've learned, and hopefully these tips will help you decide if you're ready for first socially distanced patio experience.

5 Tips for a Socially Distanced Patio Season:

  1. Start planning now, even for events in July and August. My boyfriend and I are constantly searching for events in our area on Facebook and many bars and restaurants are stating that the event is already at capacity. With them only allowing 50 people at a time, those events fill up fast. 
  2. If you're just in the mood for a casual dinner, it doesn't hurt to call a couple of days in advancel; just like any other reservation. If you decide the day of that you want to go out, I'd call when th restaurant opens to put your name on the list. 
  3. Bring a mask...just in case. I always keep one in my car; but in my experience so far, I have only seen 2 diners wearing masks; and not all restaurants are enforcing a mask policy for employees. If you'd feel more comfortable dining somewhere where the staff is required to wear a mask, ask at the time you make a reservation. 
  4. Be open to offering up your spare chairs.  Diners are coming out in large groups to celebrate the fact that they can leave the house again. You will get asked if a party of 6 can have one of your chairs if you're only a party of 2. Also, if you have space, offer to let someone who didn't book a reservation sit with you. Yes, we know there are rules, but not all restaurants are taking reservations; some are just telling you to show up and if there's room they will seat you. 
  5. Don't expect to stay long. Your reservation is good for up to 2 hours, then it's time to go. 

Been to a patio? Share your experience and let us know if you have any tips you'd like to add.