COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW)– Restaurants across the state of Ohio can reopen to outdoor dining on May 15, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced at his news conference on Thursday. Indoor dining spaces can reopen on May 21.
Bars can also reopen on those dates.
The governor released guidelines for the businesses to ensure the safety of employees and customers. An advisory board assembled by the state helped to create the recommendations.
Changes include limited occupancy and physical barriers between customers, guests being asked to wait in their cars for reservations and salad bars being served directly to customers.
Many employees will wear masks with exceptions if it creates a safety risk, like those who work the grill.
Customers may also be asked to wear face coverings in waiting areas and while walking to the restroom.
Restaurants are part of the latest phase in reopening Ohio’s businesses. DeWine also said hair salons and barbershops can open again on May 15.
The governor and Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton ordered bars and restaurants closed on March 15, just days ahead of St. Patrick’s Day. Under the order, establishments were permitted to stay open strictly for carryout and delivery.
While many restaurants tried to adjust to the new model, others decided to temporarily close as they continued to lose revenue.