In Sacramento and throughout California, life is slowly returning to normal. Bars and restaurants are full again, and we can once more plan to attend our favorite summer events.
Many of California's COVID restrictions were lifted on June 15th. But what does that mean, exactly?
Here's what you need to know about Sacramento's reopening and when -- and how -- you can get back out to enjoy the city.
Say Goodbye to Capacity Limits and Physical Distancing
Venues such as restaurants, shopping malls, movie theaters, and other everyday venues are now able to operate without capacity limits or physical distancing for fully-vaccinated individuals.
Businesses throughout the city are building up to being able to operate at full capacity, seeking to hire the staff they'll need to meet increased demand. Adam Attia, the owner of the local gym Fitness Rangers, told CBS Local that they would be operating at 50 percent capacity on June 15th, explaining "We're still kind of ramping up. I don't think it's a black and white all-or-nothing kind of thing."
Mask Requirements Have Been Relaxed for Vaccinated Californians
Fully-vaccinated Californians can now go maskless in most indoor and outdoor settings. There are some exceptions to this, however. You'll still need to mask up in certain public locations, including:
- Health care settings
- On public transit
- At state and local correctional facilities
- At homeless shelters, emergency shelters, and cooling centers
- In schools and childcare settings
Additionally, some local institutions are continuing to require visitors to wear masks, including local museums like The Aerospace Museum, The California Museum, the Crocker Art Museum, and others.
Unvaccinated individuals must still wear masks in all indoor public settings and wear masks in outdoor settings in regions experiencing high COVID transmission.
Tip: Keep a mask with you just in case, and visit the websites of any institutions, museums, or events before attending to find out what their specific mask requirements will be.
Businesses May Choose How They Verify Vaccination
In settings where masks are only required for unvaccinated individuals, businesses and hosts can choose how to verify your vaccination status. The options outlined by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) include:
Requiring proof of vaccination
Providing information regarding vaccination requirements and allowing guests, patrons, and attendees to self-attest that they are vaccinated
Requiring all patrons to wear masks
Large Events Still Pose A Higher Risk of Transmission
Large events, referred to as "Mega Events" in CDPH's Beyond the Blueprint guidelines, will be an exception to many of California's relaxed COVID regulations due to the high risk of transmission.
A Mega Event is a planned public or social occasion that includes over 5,000 participants or spectators indoors and over 10,000 outdoors. This includes events such as conventions, shows, nightclubs, concerts, sporting events, theme parks, fairs, festivals, large races, and parades. These events are likely to draw large crowds and attendees from beyond the local community and often involve spectators spending time physically close to large numbers of people. These and other factors mean that they pose a greater risk for COVID-19 transmission.
Because of these risk factors, Mega Events will still have certain safety measures in place.
Indoor Mega Events will require:
- Verification of fully vaccinated status or a negative pre-entry COVID test
- Information prominently displayed informing guests of testing and vaccination requirements
- Face mask requirements will be in place per CDPH guidelines
For Outdoor Mega Events, requirements include:
- Verification or vaccination or negative pre-entry tests are strongly recommended
- Attendees who do not verify vaccination status should wear face coverings, and CDPH's face mask requirements should be followed.
- Prominently displayed information recommending that guests be fully vaccinated or be tested before the event
- Venus will make masks available to attendees
The above requirements went into effect on June 15th, 2021, and will continue through October 1, 2021. The state will reevaluate conditions by September 1 to determine if requirements and recommendations are needed beyond October. For more information on the reopening and COVID-19 in California, visit the California Department of Public Health.