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People embracing less restrictions in N.C., some say its a ‘step in the right direction’

Updated: May. 15, 2021 at 10:36 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Many people are excited about North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s steps to ease COVID-19 restrictions.

However, others believe it’s too soon.

On Friday, Gov. Cooper lifted all mandatory capacity and gathering limits, social distancing requirements, and most mandatory mask requirements.

More than 5,000 fans attended the Charlotte Knights baseball game at Truist Field Saturday. Some fans were eager to ditch their masks, while others kept theirs on their wrists.

Backner Rivera, who is fully vaccinated, told WBTV he’s still going to wear his mask out of an abundance of caution.

“I think, for the time being, I’ll still wear my masks, especially if it’s required, but I do think it’s a step in the right direction,” Rivera said.

Dalton Clevenger, who is also fully vaccinated, said says he hopes the governor’s announcement will encourage more people to roll up their sleeves so they can take part in fewer restrictions.

“It’s exciting. Hopefully, everyone gets vaccinated with everything that’s going on,” Clevenger said.

More than 51 percent of the adult population in North Carolina is partially vaccinated.

Body By T Fitness owner Tyler Hickey says he’ll be adding up to 20 extra people to his training sessions and expanding his hours now that capacity limits are lifted.

While some of his members are fully vaccinated, he’s still offering distanced workouts and encouraging unvaccinated people to wear masks.

“We’re going to make sure that our members feel comfortable, make sure that separated to their liking, and make sure that again they’re enjoying the atmosphere while still being safe,” Hickey said.

Employees and members are still required to wash their hands and clean equipment in between each use.

After many months of curfews, capacity limits, and mandates Clevenger says these new changes bring a sense of getting back to normal.

“It feels great to slowly be going back to normal Especially being cooped up a little bit and masking up and trying to stay socially distanced as much as you can. It feels good to be back our hanging out with everyone,” Clevenger said.

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