Gyms, museums, casinos to reopen in Massachusetts on Monday
By STEVE LeBLANC and MARK PRATT
BOSTON (AP) — Gyms, casinos, museums, movie theaters and guided tours are some of the businesses and cultural activities that can begin welcoming back customers and visitors in Massachusetts as the state launches Phase 3 of its reopening plan on Monday.
In order to open, the facilities will have to meet specific safety protocols, including limiting capacity or instituting timed entries to control how many people are allowed in at a given time, Gov. Baker said Thursday. Tour buses and duck boats will be limited to 50% capacity.
Professional sports will also be able to resume playing games under Phase 3, but with no spectators in the stands.
Bars and nightclubs will remain closed for now.
Also during Phase 3, nursing homes and assisted living facilities can ease some restrictions on visitors provided that there are no new positive cases among staff or residents in a 14-day period.
Baker said Phase 3 will take much longer than prior phases as the state continues to monitor efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus and look for any spikes in cases.
“We’ve made progress but we are far from being out of the woods,” Baker said during a Statehouse press conference Thursday. “The last thing we want to do is to move backward as some states have been forced to do.”
Baker also said he hopes everyone can enjoy the Fourth of July holiday while also remaining safe by avoiding large crowds and continuing to wear face masks in public.
Businesses that have been able to survive after being closed for months are looking forward to reopening said Christopher Carlozzi, state director of the National Federation of Independent Business in Massachusetts,
“Unfortunately, the prolonged Massachusetts shutdown has led to many shops and restaurants closing their doors permanently,” he said Thursday in a press release.