Business owners and residents weigh in on Pennsylvania’s mask mandate to be lifted by June 28

Local News

June 28th is a big day for Pennsylvanians. In most situations, you no longer need to wear face masks whether you’re vaccinated or not.

Not wearing a face mask gives a new beginning for many business owners, hoping that once the mask mandate is lifted, more people will go out more and enjoy life as it was before the COVID-19 pandemic began.

After more than a year of wearing face masks, state officials say it’s time for the mask to go.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health Acting Secretary Alison Beam announced that you no longer need to wear a face mask starting June 28th or when 70% of adults get their second dose of the vaccine.

This comes one day after the state announced that 70% of Pennsylvanians received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

“Ever since I’ve had my vaccine, I’m not as worried about it and it’s great that the mask mandate is being lifted.” said Aaron Cooper, a resident of North East.

John Machuga, owner of Pub 20, says once the masks are gone, people will be going out more.

“There is a pent up demand right now for people to go out and socialize the way they used to. Once the mask mandate is gone, I think the fear will subside also and people will feel much more comfortable coming out again.” Machuga said.

One of the things you can look forward to is sitting down at a hair salon and get your hair done without having to wear a face mask.

“The face masks obviously go around the ears, which is right where all of our stylists need to be. It’s been a very tricky, long pandemic for us, so not having to wear that face mask is going to bring back so much freedom for the clients and our staff.” said Jim Farrell, Chief Operations Officer at Panache Salon and Spa.

The Erie Zoo is excited for the lift of face masks for the guests, but will still have their staff wearing the face masks.

“Our staff will always have to wear masks for the foreseeable future, but guests can make that decision on their own.” said Scott Mitchell, President and CEO of the Erie Zoo.

Business owners we spoke to tell us even though folks have a choice to wear masks on June 28th, the staff will continue wearing face masks.

The next activity to look forward to is going to the Erie Zoo on Memorial Day. Mitchell says more exhibits will open because of the lift of capacity restrictions and you do not have to reserve tickets before entering the zoo.

Watch below for the full replay of the announcement from Department of Health Acting Secretary Alison Beam

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