Four Nashville bars, including Kid Rock's Big Ass Honky Tonk & Rock 'N' Roll Steakhouse, have had their beer permits suspended after being found in violation of Phase 2 COVID-19 restrictions. Each establishment was seen serving customers at the bar, in violation of the rules for gradual re-opening.

The Tennessean reported the suspensions two days after sharing that many businesses cited for violations would fight the charges for various reasons. In the case of Kid Rock's bar, owner Steve Smith said the size of the establishment creates enough space to make serving customers safe.

"The Nashville government is, like, communist. They've got us behind a Berlin Wall," he said. "They're doing everything they can to put us out of business. The state of Tennessee is already in Phase 4 and they're talking about holding us in Phase 2. It's against our constitutional rights."

Nudie’s Honky Tonk, Moxy Nashville Downtown and Broadway Brewhouse were the other three with beer permits suspended. The representative for Nudie’s says he’ll appeal, which all businesses are allowed to do within 14 days. A fine would be a better solution, the rep told the daily newspaper.

In total, 14 businesses in the Nashville area were cited last weekend. Kid Rock's honky tonk has drawn plenty of attention since opening, and especially during the conversation around business closings in Tennessee. Smith initially resisted the idea of closing bars and restaurants, claiming downtown businesses were being unfairly targeted. A photo that circulated around social media over the weekend showing the bar packed wall-to-wall with unmasked patrons sparked concern.

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