Vaccinated Richmonders take advantage of first weekend going maskless outdoors in small groups


RICHMOND, Va (WRIC) – This is the first weekend since Governor Ralph Northam announced that fully vaccinated Virginians don’t have to wear a mask if they’re alone or in a small group outdoors.

Folks outside the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts were seen Sunday afternoon taking full advantage of Gov. Northam’s decision to side with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

If you are fully vaccinated, meaning it’s been two weeks since your second shot or your Johnson & Johnson shot, you can be in a small group outside without a face covering.

A couple enjoys a walk outside the VMFA on the first weekend since Gov. Northam announced fully-vaccinated people can go without a mask in small groups outdoors. (Photo: 8News Reporter Sabrina Shutters)

Jake Thompson and Tiffany Boggs were hanging out in a small group on the lawn outside the VMFA early Sunday and said not having to wear a mask is a sigh of relief. Others, who did not want to go on camera, told 8News they’ve never worn a mask outside since the start of the pandemic.

“Spent a lot of time inside and it’s nice to feel something semi-normal, have a little fun outside, enjoy the nice weather,” Boggs told 8News Sunday.

Thompson’s dad’s girlfriend is immuno-compromised, so he wasn’t able to hang out with them until Saturday, now that Thompson is fully vaccinated.

“We hung out yesterday and it was kind of like our first real hang out where we could hug and stuff and kind of like relax so it was nice,” he said.

The state and the CDC are still recommending that you wear a mask at large or crowded outdoor events.

Other restrictions will be eased on May 15, including allowing restaurants to be open and sell alcohol past midnight.

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