Oak Tavern manager surprised bar received mask, overcrowding complaints

Posted at 10:44 PM, Jul 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-31 23:49:38-04

CINCINNATI — Lauren Shipp was surprised when the mayor called out her Oakley bar for receiving complaints about not following COVID-19 regulations.

Oak Tavern was among six Cincinnati-area bars that have received the highest number of complaints about overcrowding and failure to enforce the statewide mask mandate.

The other bars include:

  • Pirates Cove Tropical Bar and Grill at 4609 Kellogg Ave. (Linwood)
  • Mt. Lookout Tavern at 3209 Linwood Ave. (Mount Lookout)
  • PRVLGD at 301 W. Fifth St. (Downtown)
  • Animations at 3059 Madison Rd. (Oakley)
  • Andy’s Cafe at 7201 Vine St. (Carthage)

Shipp, the bar’s general manager, said she and her staff have been following the guidelines since the start of the pandemic.

“Everything is spaced six feet apart. We spaced it. If you look at our tables, there are certain parts where you can’t put chairs. You have signs there,” Shipp said.

Shipp said that’s why she was surprised to see her bar singled out.

“The first that we heard of any complaint, I actually met with one of the liquor control agents this past Tuesday. I sat down with him. He said that there was a complaint given,” she said.

Shipp said she took the agent through the bar’s procedures and walked away without a warning.

The owner of Animations said his employees have been following state and local guidelines since the onset of the pandemic. He said his employees wear masks and parties are kept separate.

As for Oak Tavern, Shipp said she and employees will continue to follow regulations.

“We’re going to keep doing everything that we’ve been doing since day one. We’re going to do it right,” she said.