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Owner of arcade bar frustrated he can't reopen while casinos can

While bars are allowed to reopen under new guidelines, shared electronic devices are prohibited.

DENVER, Colorado — The owner of an arcade bar in Denver and Highlands Ranch said he doesn't understand why casinos with slot machines are allowed to reopen while his establishment is not.

Jourdan Adler owns 1UP, which has been closed since March 16 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bar is full of arcade games that visitors can usually play while drinking.

New guidelines allow bars to reopen starting Wednesday. However, Adler said he wouldn't be allowed to have any of the shared gaming devices running.

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"We thought our time would come... with the variance for casinos, and still shared electronic devices are not going to be allowed on the next wave of guidelines," he said.

Adler said he doesn't want to welcome back his customers with a bunch of powered down pinball machines. 

Instead, his idea was to have two shut-down arcade games between each operational one to allow for physical distancing.

"We do understand the magnitude of the touchpoints in here, but we’re here to run a successful business," Adler said. "We’re here to sanitize, we’re here to do things safe, and we only want to do this by the letter of the law. We just want to do it right, we want to do it by the law, and we feel like we should be given a chance."

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Adler said he's been in contact with the state and said he will be submitting a variance request this week to Denver County and Tri-County health departments.

1UP has locations on Colfax Avenue, on Blake Street near Coors Field and on Clinton Street in Greenwood Village.

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