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Light is showing in Covid tunnel


May 14, 2021

For more than a year, Minnesota has been operating under some level of restrictions, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. But soon, most of those restrictions will be lifted.

Gov. Tim Walz last week unveiled a three-step process to remove most Covid-19 pandemic restrictions by May 28, and end the statewide mask mandate by July 1 — sooner, if 70 percent of Minnesotans 16 and older receive at least their first vaccine dose.

The first step went into effect May 7, when crowd-size and capacity limits on outdoor dining, events and get-togethers were removed. The requirement that people wear masks outdoors was also lifted — but masks will still be required at large outdoor venues with more than 500 people. Bars and restaurants are now allowed to stay open past 11 p.m.

On May 28, all remaining capacity and distancing limits on venues, restaurants and public spaces will end, including for indoor events and gatherings. Masks will still be required indoors, and for outdoor events with more than 500 people.

And by July 1, the statewide mask mandate — which requires people to wear masks in all spaces accessible to the public, from government buildings to grocery stores — will be lifted. It could also happen before then: Walz said that if 70 percent of Minnesotans 16 and older — 3,087,404 residents — get at least one dose of the vaccine, that mandate will be lifted before July 1. Cities and counties, as well as private businesses, could choose to implement their own mask policies.


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