Movie showings, indoor dining and more customers in stores: Stage 2 of Alberta’s reopening plan arrives

CALGARY — Many of the restrictions that have been in place in Alberta for months have been eased as the province has entered Stage 2 of its reopening plan.

Albertans may now check out a blockbuster film in cinemas with just a third of the seats made available to guests.

Places of worship, arenas, theatres, museums, art galleries and libraries are all allowed to reopen with one-third occupancy.

Shops and stores may increase capacity to one-third of the operating capacity, and personal wellness services can now accept walk-in appointments.

Events are also getting a boost; weddings, funerals and outdoor social gatherings may include up to 20 guests with physical distancing required.

An outdoor concert or festival can have a crowd limit of 150 people and a fixed seating facility such as a grandstand can open with one-third capacity.

Indoor social gatherings are still not permitted in Stage 2.

Restaurant-goers will have the option of being served on a patio or indoor dining room in parties of up to six people. Stage 2 no longer requires the diners to be from the same household or cohort.

Gyms and fitness studios may open for solo or drop-in activities with physical distancing and group classes can resume with three metre spacing.

All restrictions are lifted for indoor and outdoor sports for all ages. Day camps, overnight camps and play centres, may also resume operations.

Students may attend on-campus instruction at post-secondary settings as institutions are now permitted to resume in-person learning.

Working from home is no longer an order, but the province still recommends it.

The rules for mask-wearing and physical spacing remain unchanged.

Stages of the province’s ‘Open for Summer’ reopening plan are spaced out by a minimum of two weeks, but Alberta is currently not in a position to advance to Stage 3 by June 24 as the benchmark of 70 per cent of eligible Albertans receiving the initial dose of the COVID-19 has yet to be met.

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