Bay Shore's planned “Nashville Thursdays” weekly summer series has been canceled by the New York State Liquor Authority. The downtown event, scheduled to begin Thursday, July 2, was set to have local restaurants, bars and shops remain open from 7 to 10 p.m. offering live music with no cover charge on Main Street, evoking a similar celebration that takes place on Broadway in Nashville, Tennessee.
“Due to circumstances beyond our control and by directive of The State Liquor Authority we are forced to cancel The ‘Nashville Thursdays’ promotion tomorrow night [July 2] and every Thursday in Bay Shore until further notice,” says Mike McElwee, chair of the Bay Shore Restaurant Committee and owner of Local Burger Co., T.J. Finley’s and The Penny Pub. “We will attempt to work with the Liquor Authority and all appropriate agencies to get approval to host these events.”
The 17 venues were scheduled to offer live music including Jonny Ray at Napper Tandy’s, J.D. Leonard at Corks & Taps, Fred “The Human iPod” Maloney at T.J. Finley’s and Justin “JHaus” Haus at Coastal Kitchen & Daiquiri Bar.
William Crowley of the state Liquor Authority’s Public Affairs Office said: “The SLA understands the economic hardships facing businesses. However, in the midst of a global health pandemic, an event of this nature poses serious challenges with respect to compliance and has the potential to undermine the progress New York State has made, especially in light of the troubling spikes of the coronavirus we’re seeing throughout the nation.”
However, McElwee is not giving up and plans to move forward.
“We hope to bring this promotion back at a future date,” he says. “In these trying times we were hoping to provide some entertainment to our socially distanced guests and also wanted to help out local musicians get back to work.”