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Fans Shed the Masks as Live Music Returns Indoors

Grumpy's Pub in Falmouth Facebook Page

Live music was back at local nightclubs over Memorial Day weekend on Cape Cod as Massachusetts rolled back pandemic restrictions.

Bars and local music venues were allowed to open to full capacity, and masks were no longer required.

Among the bands returning on Saturday, local 3-piece the Commonwealth played at Grumpy's Pub in Falmouth.

Members of the band said there were excited to be back including Bass-player Ben Elder. He said that it was a little emotional too playing in front of a crowd inside the pub.

“It’s almost shameful, but we were playing a cover song, and people were going nuts, and I teared up a little bit,” Elder said.

About 200 people attended the show, and masks were few and far between, but patrons were dancing and having fun.

One concern-goer, identified as Sam, said she was happy seeing the band after a year-and-half. "I am so happy to be back, it’s amazing; bopping around, it’s amazing,” she said.

Others said that catching a live show, in person, was a relief after a tough year.

Bartender Kevin Riley, taking a quick break from serving customers, said he was happy that live music was back. But he was also happy with the expanded capacity, after working some slow nights over the pandemic.

"To see the energy from the crowd, to see the energy from the people, it’s such a big difference from a couple of bar tables," Riley said. "It’s a little surreal that we’re all doing it right now.”

The bartender also said that people's spirits were high.

Everyone interviewed at the bar Saturday night said that they had been vaccinated against the coronavirus, and they felt safe taking off their masks.

Grumpy's did not require proof of vaccination to enter, but state officials say that some Cape venues may be requiring proof to enter.

Sam Houghton left CAI in February, 2023, to become News Editor at the Martha's Vineyard Times.
He worked at CAI since the summer of 2017. Before that, he worked at the Falmouth Enterprise, where he covered local politics.