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Unmasking Kentucky: Businesses happy with latest mask mandates


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After more than a year of masking up and social distancing, local businesses are ready to see things get back to normal.

“As soon as they tell us we can lift it, we are ready to get these masks off,” Tara Harris, the owner of Rolling Hills Plaza Barber Shop, said.

Gov. Andy Beshear announced Friday morning Kentucky would be allowing events and venues to open up to 100 percent capacity and the state will be lifting the mask mandate.

“The last 14 months have been hard on all of us and the next 14 months have the chance to be something special,” Beshear said.

The announcement comes a day after the CDC issued updated guidelines that allow people who are fully vaccinated, meaning it has been more than two weeks after their final COVID-19 vaccine shot, to not wear masks indoors and outdoors barring certain circumstances.

For Harris, this news comes as she’s seen more customers returning to the barber’s chair over the last few weeks as more Kentuckians are receiving their coronavirus vaccines.

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Rick Bartlett learned Friday morning that his restaurant, Ricky B’s Club Cafe, would soon be able to operate at 100 percent capacity, which he has never experienced yet having opened in the middle of the pandemic.

“I don’t know what that is, but I’m excited to find out,” he said. “Now it’s a different thing to manage – more people.”

Bartlett said lifting restrictions will also help eliminate a lot of the uncertainty surrounding his restaurant, which has also recently seen business pick up.

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