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States Ease Restrictions as Virus Infections Lower

As vaccination rates climb and the number of Infections lowers, more U.S. towns and states ignore remaining COVID-19 prohibitions just in time for Memorial Day weekend. Massachusetts removed the need for wearing a mask on Saturday, a day after New Jersey did so. Officials in New York City and Chicago reopened public beaches, even though winds and chilly temperatures kept people away.

After the pandemic forced months of closures at the popular tourist site, Chicago’s Navy Pier reopened retail stores, restaurants, carnival rides, tour boats and cruises. It’s yet another indicator of advancement that corresponds to a growing body of good health data. The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 802 new confirmed and probable Infections on Saturday, the second-lowest number in the last six months.

The improved economy and long holiday weekend provided an opportunity for companies around the country to welcome people back to in-person shopping. For the first time in almost 14 months, the Midtown Scholar Bookstore in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, welcomed customers on Friday. Masks must still be worn. The company had moved to internet ordering, sidewalk sales, and virtual author events to survive the pandemic. Minnesota’s statewide coronavirus restrictions for bars and restaurants were relaxed on Friday. However, municipal governments can maintain their social separation and mask requirements.

According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around half of the United States’ population has already gotten at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccination. About 40% of the population has received all of their vaccines. Vermont has the highest immunization rate in the country, with approximately 70% of residents receiving at least one dose of vaccine.

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