PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — In the Montavilla neighborhood, servers at Threshold Brewing and Blending are pouring brews for customers both inside the bar and outside on the patio.

Co-owners Sara and Jarek Szymanski say they’ve been wearing masks as an added layer of safety inside the business.

However, starting Saturday, they are increasing their safety protocols. The couple said their business will join a growing list of bars and restaurants asking customers to show a vaccination card or pictures of their card in order to be seated inside. (Their full statement and policy is at the bottom of this article.)

Sara Szymanski is the co-owner of Threshold Brewing and Blending in Portland’s Montavilla neighborhood, August 6, 2021 (KOIN)

“The case levels right now are just concerning. I mean, they are higher than they were in the winter when they were at their worst,” Sara said.

“As of Saturday,” Jarek said, “we will implement the rule when we will ask folks to show the proof of vaccination, for everyone’s safety including us working here as well.”

Some concert spaces are also requiring proof of vaccination. The Goodfoot on SE Stark instituted a “vaccination show policy,” with an online statement: “Due to the increase in cases and emergence of the more transmissible delta variant, all shows will require proof of vaccination. Proof is not required in the upstairs pub or outside tables.”

Sara said Daniel Shoemaker at Teardrop Lounge is leading the coalition of bars and restaurants who have come together to support one another.

The Associated Press reports Shoemaker expects to add up to 30 more members as they seek to protect customers and staff by allowing only vaccinated guests inside. Each bar in the coalition will create its own rules around what constitutes proof, but generally a vaccine card or photo of it should suffice. Most will continue to offer outdoor seats to all.

The coalition was formed after seeing bars in San Francisco and Seattle do the same last week.

“We want our customers to be safe. We want our customers to be comfortable,” she said. “But we also don’t want to have to shut down because one of us gets sick. That’s a real concern.”

“It’s been a tough year,” she said. But she’s encouraged that other bars and restaurant owners are supporting each other with these new efforts.

“We are happy that other businesses are knid of gathering together in a show of support putting these policies into effect as a commmunity,” she said.

“We are all in it together and hopefully we can get over this and start living our normal lives,” added Jarek.

Threshold Brewing and Blending in Portland’s Montavilla neighborhood, August 6, 2021 (KOIN)

The full statement from Threshold Brewing and Blending

An Update on Indoor Seating and Vaccinations

We should have communicated better
Thank you to everyone who has taken time to express either support or frustration regarding our decision yesterday to begin requiring vaccinations for indoor seating. We know this isn’t a universally popular decision. Our goal in adopting this policy is to help reduce the risk of Covid transmission and the rapidly rising Delta variant.

With that in mind, we apologize for what we now see as a lack of clarity and thoughtfulness in our initial statement.

To clarify our policy, we are limiting our indoor seating to those who are: vaccinated; with a 48-hour negative Covid test; a precluding medical condition; or ineligible for the vaccine.

We will not be requiring visible proof of vaccination as previously stated, but will instead be adopting an honor-based system. We believe this will be similarly effective and kinder to all.

Again, we apologize for inadequately considering and communicating yesterday’s statement. We should have done better.

  • Sara and Jarek
    Threshold Brewing & Blending