Massachusetts will reactivate more sectors of its economy Monday as the state enters Phase 2 of its plan to reopen amid the global coronavirus pandemic.
Restaurants will be able to open for outside dining, and customers can go into shops, with restrictions.
Royal Jewelers in Andover has seen plenty in their 72 years of business, but nothing like this.
They have new procedures in place including wearing masks and sanitizing. They also have protective shields in the store and are thanking the customers who made online orders while they were shut down.
“To make sure that everyone who comes in here is totally safe and comfortable shopping in this new environment....as well as our staff and team, we’ve made sure we’ve taken every precaution possible to make sure everyone is happy, healthy and safe,” said Royal Jewelers owner Steven Leed.
Elsewhere in Andover, Yella is one of the businesses in the Merrimack Valley that was hit especially hard.
They were forced to shut down during the explosions, and now, due to the pandemic, business is down about 50-percent due to take-out only.
“We’re still significantly less than if we were to be open as a full service dining restaurant, it’s a really social place and people come to reconnect with friends and family,” owner Danielle Berdahn said.
Berdahn says shes thrilled for outdoor dining but has one more hurdle to get over, which is gaining approval from the town to shut down the private street near them allowing Yella and other restaurants to expand their outdoor dining to accommodate more than just a few tables.
“We just can’t wait to actually have the opportunity to be able to do that,” she said.
Other big openings Monday with restrictions are child care, day camps, hotels, and youth sports.
Gov. Charlie Baker laid out all the details on Saturday for the second phase — dubbed the "cautious phase" — which notably has been broken into two different parts.
The first part, which starts Monday, will allow for the reopening of retail stores with occupancy limits, child care and day camps with specific guidelines, hotels and lodging, youth sports and outdoor seated dining.
High schools, colleges and technical and occupation schools, as well as driving and flight schools, can pick up in-person services to help students complete graduation requirements.
Other businesses, including indoor dining at restaurants and close-contact services, such as nail salons, massage therapy and tanning salons, will have to wait as health officials monitor progress in the state.
“Thanks to your hard work and your sacrifices, we’re bringing the fight to the virus and we’re moving forward, and Massachusetts is continuing to reopen,” Baker said.
Phase 2 allows more freedom for health providers to provide preventative services like annual exams. More forms of outdoor recreations, such as campgrounds, playgrounds and public pools, can also open up.
Non-urgent health care procedures, funeral homes with occupancy limits and outdoor historical spaces with no functions, gatherings or guided tours are also included in this first step of Phase 2.
This move to the second of four phases comes three weeks after Massachusetts began its initial move to reopen on May 18. That move allowed manufacturing, construction, houses of worship, hair salons and more to open their doors with strict guidelines.
“This terrible virus and the terrible toll it takes will be with us until there are medical breakthroughs with respect to treatments or vaccines,” Baker said.
To see a full list of the businesses included in the first and second steps of Phase 2, click here.