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All Massachusetts Restaurants and Bars Will Shut Down for Three Weeks, Except for Takeout and Delivery

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Governor Charlie Baker’s order will be in effect from March 17 through April 6

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All Massachusetts bars and restaurants will be shuttered for dine-in business from March 17 through April 6. (This is an update; the end date was originally reported to be April 17.) The measure, aimed at slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus, allows for takeout and delivery, and pharmacies and grocery stores can remain in operation.

Governor Charlie Baker’s announcement supersedes one made just a few hours earlier by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh that allowed Boston restaurants to remain open (although many had already voluntarily closed temporarily) at reduced capacity and with reduced hours, no lines allowed outside, and a strict penalty for noncompliance.

With the new statewide directive in place, the only portion of Walsh’s new Boston-specific regulations that will really come into play is that all Boston restaurants can offer takeout, even if they weren’t previously licensed to do so.

Governor Baker’s announcement also bans gatherings larger than 25 people, and all public and private schools are suspended for three weeks, through April 7.

Massachusetts is not the only state to declare a complete restaurant shutdown; Illinois and Ohio have done the same.