Simcoe County prepares to go orange
BARRIE, ONT. -- With just over one day to go before Simcoe Muskoka moves into the orange COVID-19 restriction category, people were out and about in big numbers Saturday.
Craig Beatty of Barrie anticipated the change.
"I've seen an awful lot of people without masks," Beatty said while grabbing lunch. "I'm surprised we're not in the red (category)."
The shift to orange at 12:01 a.m. Monday comes with a number of enhanced measures and restrictions.
Bars and restaurants will have to limit seating to 50 indoors. They must stop selling liquor by 9 p.m. and close by 10 p.m.
Deb's Place Family Restaurant celebrated its 17th year in business last week. Owner Deb Heels says the changes will be challenging.
"We'll be down to four people per table; we've gone down from six. Now it will make it a little difficult for larger families. We might have to put them at two separate tables".
Everyone coming in to eat or drink will also have to leave their personal information for contact tracing purposes.
In sports and recreation, in orange, spectators won't be allowed inside facilities to watch and cheer.
Indoor capacity for religious services, weddings, and funerals will drop to 30 percent, with a cap of 100 people outdoors.
Casinos and other gaming facilities and cinemas can host a maximum of 50 people.
Shopping centres in Simcoe County's biggest city were Saturday, prompting questions about whether upcoming lockdowns in Toronto and Peel Region may have pushed shoppers north.