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Restrictions eased as COVID cases fall

As COVID-19 cases continue to abate, Gov. Ralph Northam announced a loosening of restrictions on outdoor events during a Wednesday, Feb. 24, news conference.

Beginning March 1, the number of people allowed to gather in outdoor settings for social gatherings will be increased from 10 to 25 people. The restrictions remain at 10 people for indoor gatherings.

Outdoor entertainment venues such as football stadiums and racetracks will be able to operate at the lower of 1,000 spectators or 30% capacity. Indoor entertainment venues continue to have a cap of 250 people.

Some dining restrictions were also rolled back. The on-site sale and consumption of alcohol was extended from 10 p.m. to midnight.

Overnight summer camps are able to open with strict mitigation protocols in place.

“Thank to the hard work and sacrifice of all Virginians, hospitalizations and positivity rates across the commonwealth are the lowest they have been in nearly three months,” Northam said. “As key health metrics show encouraging trends and we continue to ramp up our vaccination efforts, we can begin to gradually resume certain recreational activities and further reopen sectors of our economy.”

A press release from the governor’s office said these guidelines will be effective for at least a month. Mitigation measures may be eased further if key health metrics continue to improve.