Why Hollywood Ballroom is Open for Dancing during COVID


Why Hollywood Ballroom is Open for Dancing


As the omicron covid-19 variant spreads, several dances in the Washington DC area have been suspended, but not dances sponsored by Hollywood Ballroom. Why is that?

Because Hollywood Ballroom’s space, air-handling equipment, and policies provide the safest environment possible for indoor dancing.

The Space

Hollywood Ballroom’s dance area of 5500 square feet and twelve-foot ceiling is huge: 66,000 cubic feet of space for dancing alone, not to mention the entry areas, bar space, studio, and restrooms, which adds another 48,000 cubic feet for those areas. Hollywood is not outdoors, but it’s a pretty good simulation of one.

The Equipment

Hollywood’s air-handling equipment constantly sanitizes the air. There are two separate HVAC systems constantly circulating air even when not heating or cooling. Their fans are never turned off. Each system is installed with four, 46-inch Ultra Violet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) tubes that sterilizes airborne bacteria and viruses, including Covid-19. In addition, each system has six, 24×18 inch MERV-13 air filters installed, which are changed every three months. The last change was December 30, 2021. A 1/4 horsepower, roof-mounted fan continuously extracts air from each restroom to the outside. Every table in Hollywood Ballroom has a Purell hand sanitizer pump.

The Policies

Hollywood Ballroom’s policies also discourage the spread of Covid. Every person attending a public dance at Hollywood Ballroom must be vaccinated for Covid-19, and show proof of such. Contact information is retained. Masks are required. Even before Covid, and always, anyone not feeling well is encouraged not to attend. Entrance fees are not collected in advance, eliminating the incentive to attend because a ticket was already purchased.

The Results

No business can guarantee that no one will contract Covid, but given its environment, equipment, and policies,  Hollywood Ballroom remains a safe place to dance. That’s why it remains open.


Richard Zierdt, Co-owner
Hollywood Ballroom Dance Center