Mayor Bowser Lifts Some COVID Restrictions


Slowly but surely, things are going back to normal — or at least the new normal.

In a press conference on Monday, March 15, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced some lifting of COVID restrictions, in line with increased vaccination rates around the District. Here’s what you need to know.

Dining 

Alcohol can now be sold until midnight, but restaurants are required to close by midnight. Also, on March 22, indoor dining at restaurants can increase to 25-percent capacity (up to 250 people). Of course, everyone must be socially distanced and, if a restaurant has a bar, no standing at the bar is allowed. In April, there will be another check-in to see about raising capacity limits and allowing live music.

Get-Togethers and Gatherings 

One week from today, on Monday, March 22, outdoor gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed as long as participants are socially distanced. Indoor get-togethers are still at 10 people, but the mayor plans to reassess this in April.

Libraries 

After Monday, March 29, public libraries in D.C. are allowed to resume indoor operations.

Professional Sports 

Good news for Nationals fans: professional sports can operate with fans as long as teams submit a waiver with plans for hosting people (teams can reapply to play and have fans on March 22). Once again, in April there will be another assessment. As of now, 5,000 Nationals fans can watch a game in person. If vaccinations continue to rise and cases fall, this number may rise later this summer.

Recreational Sports

Starting next Monday, March 22, some high school and middle school sports can begin. Applications are also open for spring drills and practices. Low-to-moderate-contact sports will take place, as playgrounds are to reopen. There are also plans for a small number of Department of Parks and Recreation indoor rec centers to open by reservation only. Fields at their facilities will be limited to 250 people at one time.

Gyms 

If you miss exercising with a group, you’re in luck. Beginning on March 22, indoor fitness classes can resume with up to 10 people and outdoor classes with up to 50 people. If you’re using gym equipment, you’ll be required to stand six feet apart. Capacity will be limited at 25 percent or 250 people, whichever is lower. This will be reassessed later this spring.

Summer Camps 

Summer camps will be available for children between the ages of 3 and 13. Campers will be socially distanced. Registration is set to open on Monday, March 22.

For more information on D.C.’s COVID response, visit https://coronavirus.dc.gov/.

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