San Francisco on Friday is set to reopen outdoor restaurant dining, Monterey County will welcome back tourists, Sacramento County will open its bars and Los Angeles County will let gyms resume business, as counties around the state continue to loosen their coronavirus shelter-in-place orders.
But figuring out what you can do — and where — can be an exercise in confusion as the Bay Area and state remain governed by a tapestry of divergent rules. Who opens what depends on a host of complex factors, including permission from the state and calculations made by individual counties’ health officials even as COVID-19 case counts in the Bay Area and across California continue to rise. The state has now reported more than 140,000 cases and 4,800 deaths.
As of Friday, Bay Area diners can enjoy al fresco meals at their favorite restaurants everywhere except Alameda County — which has the region’s largest COVID-19 caseload. Contra Costa County, on the other hand, is moving more quickly. Starting next Wednesday, it will become the first in the five-county Bay Area to allow hair salons and barber shops to reopen.
“We’re balancing the health of the community against the impact on our economy and so many of our businesses as well,” said Candace Andersen, chair of the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors. “And then you throw in the emotional impact on individuals.”
But compared to other California counties that on Friday are opening bars, gyms and other establishments considered potentially riskier when it comes to spreading the virus, the Bay Area is moving more cautiously.
Marin County takes a big step toward reopening Friday, allowing indoor retail sales and house cleaning. Campgrounds at 28 state parks also are set to reopen Friday, including Half Moon Bay State Beach on the San Mateo coast.
Though Los Angeles County has been a COVID-19 hotspot, officials there already have opened hair salons and barber shops, restaurants and retail stores. On Friday, gyms, museums and campgrounds will reopen, and film and television crews can resume rolling. In Orange County, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have announced plans to reopen July 17. And in Sacramento County, bars, movie theaters and campgrounds also are due to open Friday.
As a state, California is in stage two of reopening, which allows for services such as curb-side retail, car washes, pet grooming, landscape gardening and outdoor museums. More than 50 counties, including Los Angeles, Contra Costa, Napa, Sonoma and Monterey, have received special permission from the governor’s office to go further.
But taking advantage of that dispensation comes with risks. As Contra Costa County reopens hair salons, Andersen acknowledged that come Wednesday, residents from all over the Bay Area might flock to her county to get their hair cut — potentially bringing the virus with them.
Hair Illusions Salon in Tracy reopened two weeks ago. Now, business is up at least 50% from pre-pandemic levels, and as many as 15% of clients are coming from outside the county, said Rosa Ngauamo, who co-owns the salon with her parents.
Clients, desperate for a trim or a touch-up after three months, are making the trek from Dublin, Livermore, San Jose, Sunnyvale, Martinez and beyond, said Ngauamo, who added that the salon has plenty of personal protective equipment and hand sanitizer. Their most popular requests are for root touch-ups, gray coverage and men’s cuts.
“The men that have been coming in, they look extremely shaggy,” she said.
Despite the risk of non-residents flocking to Contra Costa County, Anderson said with all of the hygiene and sanitation requirements in place, she thinks infection isn’t likely. And as businesses reopen, patrons and workers are supposed to wear face masks to keep the virus from spreading.
“I think it’s more likely at a family gathering where people aren’t masked, they’re sharing food — something like that,” she said.
What’s open, and what’s opening soon:
Santa Clara County — Outdoor restaurant dining, indoor retail shopping and outdoor swimming pools, among other services, reopened June 5.
Alameda County — Health officials on Monday allowed residents to gather with people in a 12-person “social bubble.” The next step, in two to four weeks, will be to allow several new activities, including outdoor dining at restaurants, outdoor shopping, visiting outdoor museums and swimming in pools.
Contra Costa County — Outdoor dining, pools and dog parks reopened June 5. Starting Wednesday, residents can return to hair salons and barbershops. On July 1, the county plans to reopen indoor dining, bars that don’t serve food, indoor religious services, gyms and fitness centers, bowling alleys and more.
San Francisco — Health officials will allow outdoor dining at restaurants starting Friday, and indoor retail Monday. The Warriors began individual, socially distanced workouts at the Chase Center last week. The Giants have the city’s OK to return to Oracle Park on Monday but won’t do so until Major League Baseball owners and the MLB Players Association reach a deal to resume training.
San Mateo County — As of last weekend, residents may sit down to outdoor meals at local restaurants, rent chartered boats and attend indoor funerals of up to 10 people, or outdoor funerals of up to 25 people. County supervisors on Friday will discuss whether to apply for permission from the governor’s office to reopen faster.
Staff writers Paul Rogers, Kerry Crowley and Wes Goldberg contributed to this article.
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Author: Marisa Kendall