A new year with a new variant: Venues trying to limit Omicron spread

Posted at 3:34 PM, Dec 30, 2021

WOODFORD COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — The New Year’s Eve party that’s always been fit for a king and queen, is back, albeit, streamlined.

“This party is going to look a lot different than it did two years ago,” said Kentucky Castle COO, Christie Eckerline. “The capacity is significantly cut down,” she added.

Rather than selling its normal allotment of 225 tickets for this year’s December 31 celebration, the Kentucky Castle’s party will be limited to just under 100 revelers who will be spread out across two large rooms.


Live music will be playing, the drinks will be flowing, and by keeping the crowd number much smaller, the hope is the Omicron Variant won’t be shedding. The Castle has become very good at making this work over the last 21 months.

“We have been able to change, shift and move to take on more real estate so that people are able to stay spaced out,” Eckerline said.


In Lexington’s Distillery District, the pub crawl is a popular New Year’s Eve staple, but it didn’t seem as if any of the pubs there have anything special planned.

“We are kind of everybody’s first stop on their way out. They pre-game with us,” said Rickhouse Pub General Manager, Tracy Southworth.

Southworth said there will be some menu specials for the night, but they won’t be adding tables to cram more people inside.

“All of our surfaces are sanitized after every customer,” she said of the practice that will be no different on Friday night.

She also said that Rickhouse will just be what it always is the other 364 nights of the year.

Mrs. Eckerline said she’s just glad to be able to put on a party at all after losing out last year. Proof of vaccination won’t be required of guests, but common sense would be much-welcomed.

“As everyone has been saying, be aware of your health, and if you don’t feel well then, stay at home,” she said.