Although outdoor event capacity limit was lifted, local venues still expect fewer people

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Many health orders, like mask wearing and social distancing, are still going to be in place

(WKBN) – On Monday, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced that capacity limits on outdoor events would be dropped, though he added that masks and social distancing are still required. So, how will this affect local concerts in the summer?

As the weather starts to turn, people want to be outside more, and outdoor concerts are being planned.

With Gov. Dewine raising the capacity for outdoor venues to 100%, many are excited to hear the news.

“We’re excited to hear things are a go and we look forward to moving forward with our 2021 Concerts in the Park series,” said Austintown Trustee Jim Davis.

But this doesn’t mean a free for all as many of the health orders are still going to remain in place.

“Still want to see more of the details because we still want to be responsible, still don’t want to lump people together. We want things to get better so we want to be responsible, but it’s a big step forward,” said Sunrise Entertainment President Ken Haidaris.

Before COVID-10, the Warren Community Amphitheatre could sit 6,000 people. But even with 100% capacity, they’re still limited on where people can sit.

“I’m guessing 1,500, 2,000 and it depends. The more people that come in groups of 10 and we can sit together, obviously, the more we can get in,” Haidaris said.

The plan is to rope areas off to help maintain social distancing.

At Austintown Park, where they were able to hold outdoor concerts last year, they have nine acres to work with. Davis said even with guidelines, they won’t be near capacity.

“That was our big argument last year, that we could provide something very safe for the community and we want to continue this again this year,” he said.

Both places aren’t starting until late May or June, so things could change between now and then.

“We’re going to prepare for the current rules and, of course, if things relax, we can make our adjustments. But as of right now, everything we’re doing — staffing, everything we’re preparing — is on today’s current rules,” Haidaris said.

On Thursday, JAC Live, which runs the Youngstown Foundation Amphitheatre, said, “At this time, we are not ready to discuss exactly how these new guidelines will directly affect our venue.”

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