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Downtown Calistoga quiet as city weathers Coronavirus

Downtown Calistoga quiet as city weathers Coronavirus

From the Complete coronavirus coverage from the Napa Valley Register, St. Helena Star, and The Weekly Calistogan series

The normal bustle of dowtown Calistoga has slowed down considerably.

In the past few years, the town has endured the threat of wildfires, evacuation, and now, along with the rest of the world, a deadly virus.

In response, the city is cooperating with Napa County’s declaration of a public health emergency over the Coronavirus (COVID-19). For the next couple of weeks at least, schools are shut down, most events are canceled, and a couple of businesses have decided to close.

On Saturday, a day before Gov. Newsom’s announcement that wineries must close, valets at the entrance to Castello di Amorosa were monitoring the number of visitors, to ensure not more than 250 were allowed in at one time.

By Monday, a couple of businesses along Lincoln Avenue had signs posted on their doors that had closed on account of the virus, including Lincoln Avenue Brewery, and Wine Stop.

Late that afternoon, Susie’s Bar, a small percentage of the usual crowd had gathered — the same people who refused to leave during the Kincade fire, said co-owner Frank Kibbish. Kibbish said he was trying to be optimistic. “We’re taking it day by day.”

On Tuesday, Hydro Grill, and Calistgoa Inn Restaurant & Brewery held St. Patrick’s Day specials as planned, although Napa Valley’s Celtic band Kith & Kin canceled their performance at the Inn due to concerns about the coronovirus.

Visit Calistoga has provided a directory of business updates to highlight businesses that are making changes to their operations. Most restaurants are offering take-out service, and wineries are offering specials on shipping.

“With events unfolding as fast as they are, we know it is hard to sort through all the information we are being bombarded with,” said Calistoga Chamber Executive Director Troy Campbell in a statement. “Therefore, we have created a resource hub on the homepage of There you will find links to the County of Napa, Employment Development Department, US Small Business Administration, the CDC and Visit California.”

Editor’s note: Because of the health implications of the COVID-19 virus, this article is being made available free to all online readers. If you’d like to join us in supporting the mission of local journalism, please visit

You can reach Cynthia Sweeney at 942-4035 or

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The Weekly Calistogan Editor

Cynthia Sweeney has been editor of The Weekly Calistogan since July, 2018. Previously, she was a reporter for the St. Helena Star, and North Bay Business Journal. She also spent a significant amount of time freelancing in Hawaii.

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