OAKLAND, Calif. - The iconic Grand Lake Theatre in Oakland closed its doors to movie goers on Sunday, the same day Gov. Gavin Newsom called for seniors to stay at home and bars and nightclubs to close to curb the global coronavirus pandemic.
"We are saddended to announce the Grand Lake Theater is temporarily closing for the health and safety of our employees and customers," the movie theater said on its website. "We will reopen as soon as safely possible.
While there was no direct order in California or the nation for movie theaters to close, individual cities were making their own decisions on the safety of people sitting so close together and watching films.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti have ordered all movie theaters in their cities to close amid the global coronavirus crisis, an unprecedented move for two of the nation's biggest bustling cities.
Garcetti's order, announced via a live speech delivered Sunday night, also includes gyms, bowling alleys, bars, nightclubs and arcades. He said grocery stores, food banks and pharmacies will remain open. He's also ordering restaurants to close, but will allow takeout service and deliveries as he encouraged people to continue to patronize restaurants and small businesses.
On Friday, AMC Theatres and Regal Entertainment Group -- the nation's two largest movie theater chains -- announced they are reducing their maximum capacity by at least 50% due to the coronavirus outbreak.