Valentine's Day 2021: New York to Allow Indoor Dining if This Happens
By Erika Dee
Valentine's Day is literally around the corner and couples know for themselves that this year's celebration would be unlike the previous years before COVID-19 decided that it wants to stay on Earth for an extended period of time.
New York however will strive to make the day feels as magical as it has been before the pandemic hits by allowing indoor dining, as reported by NPR.
New York on Valentine's Day 2021: Indoor Dining Possible?
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Friday this plan, although stated that it remains contingent on coronavirus infection rates. If the rates go up significantly between today and Valentine's day, the plan might have to be shelved.
Cuomo stated that as long as the state continues to have a declining trend of COVID-19 cases, then reopening's possibility can increase. The plan is to have restaurants open for indoor dining at 25% capacity on February 14. If the declining trend continues, then wedding receptions might also be held starting March 15, at 50% capacity. The announcements are made in a time when rates are indeed, decreasing. All that needs to happen now is for the rates to continue declining.
"As data on infection rates and hospitalizations continue to improve, we must begin taking steps to jump start our economic recovery as long as public health can be protected," Cuomo said. "The restaurant industry is the lifeblood of New York City and the economic hardship they have endured at the hands of COVID is nothing short of tragic."
COVID-19 in New York City
The state was certainly ravaged by the COVID-19 infection starting last year.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the city reported aroud 203,000 cases in the first three months. The death toll was no small number either. A total of 18,679 people tragically died of the virus. Even though some COVID-19 measures imposed allowed the city to flatten the the curve shortly after, it was not able to have the virus under control for an indefinite time. Soon, rates were rising again.
On December 14, the governor had to suspend indoor dining to further strive to slow down the spread of the infection.
However, since it was already the winter season, and the temperatures dropped, cases increased even more. This is relatively similar across the country.
In 2021, while there were a reported 7,897 cases on Jan. 4, the number of cases has been witnessing a decline since then.
If the trend continues, then indoor dining can be opened on the very special day of hearts.
If not, then couples can be as creative and romantic at home. If they have to spend the day with their kids, then so be it. There are a handful of ideas that they can try for the special day and make it special even with their kids around.
Regardless if New York City allows for indoor dining, it might even be a better idea to just stay home and celebrate the day if restaurants cannot operate on full capacity anyway. Moreover, staying home is always the better option for staying safe from the persistent virus.