Back in April, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the state of California would fully reopen on June 15th. This means that the color-coded reopening system, which Newsom unveiled last August, is ending. And all mask and general capacity limits will go away, with some exceptions.
During an online webinar yesterday, Mayor London Breed, Acting Health Officer Dr. Susan Philip, and other city officials announced that San Francisco will more or less align with the state’s guidelines for reopening. So starting next Tuesday, restaurants and other indoor activities, which have been operating at limited capacities, will be able to open at 100%.
All of this to say, a lot is changing come June 15th - sort of. And these are confusing and overwhelming times - but at least we’ll still have to-go cocktails? For a quick breakdown of what’s changing in SF next week as California fully reopens - and what that means for eating and drinking out, read on.
Wait, sorry, what’s happening on June 15th?
So you don’t read introductory paragraphs. We suspected this would be the case. We repeat: California is fully reopening on June 15th. Counties will get to choose how to move forward, and San Francisco released their reopening plan yesterday, as outlined below.
What does California reopening mean for SF restaurant capacity?
SF restaurants will be permitted to operate at full capacity for the first time since mid-March 2020. The magic number here is 100% - restaurants around town are currently only allowed to open their dining rooms at 50% capacity.
What’s going to happen to parklets?
Governor Newsom recently expanded outdoor dining through the end of 2021, which means the parklets and sidewalk seating areas you know and love are here to stay for now. Here in San Francisco, city officials are also working to make parklets more permanent.
When do I have to wear a mask in San Francisco?
It depends. Fully vaccinated San Franciscans are no longer required to wear masks in most indoor and outdoor settings. If you’re not fully vaccinated, you are required to wear a mask indoors and outdoors when you can’t maintain physical distance.
Exceptions include public transportation, airports, and other federally-mandated transportation networks (that mandate will expire September 13th), as well as high-risk settings like shelters or skilled nursing facilities. Another time you’ll have to wear a mask: at “mega-events” (the state’s words, not ours), indoor events with over 5,000 people, or outdoor events with over 10,000.
Will I have to wear a mask when I go to a restaurant or bar in the city?
Local businesses will still get to make their own mask rules. So if a restaurant asks you to wear your mask when you get up to go to the bathroom, please (please) respect their request. Our advice? Check in with a restaurant’s staff or look out for signs before you waltz around in their space unmasked.
Will bars still be serving drinks to go?
If you’re into the concept of taking a margarita home or getting a bottled negroni delivered to your doorstep, you’re in luck - Governor Newsom recently announced that to-go cocktails would be allowed through the rest of the year.
Will I have to wear a mask if I work in a restaurant or bar?
Cal/OSHA, or California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health, voted last week to continue requiring masks in the workplace if not all workers are vaccinated. If everyone is fully vaccinated, they can be unmasked. The organization called a special meeting on June 9th to reconsider the vote, so these rules could change.
You didn't answer my question.
Sorry about that. But thanks for reading to the bottom! We’ll be updating this as we get more information, so stay tuned, or drop us a line at email@example.com with any specific questions you have.