Gov. Hogan says Maryland businesses can reopen at 100% capacity this weekend and that kids ages 12-15 will soon be able to get the vaccine.

 All businesses in Maryland will be able to open at 100 percent capacity on Saturday, Gov. Larry Hogan announced Wednesday, bringing an end to COVID-19 restrictions that have been in place for more than a year.

"As a direct result of our incredibly fast pace of vaccinations — and because of the subsequent decline in hospitalizations, positivity rate, transmission rate, and case rate," the Republican governor said, "we are lifting all restrictions on all outdoor entertainment, art, sports venues — including all ticketed events — as well as indoor entertainment venues, conventions, and other businesses."

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The indoor mask mandate still remains. But Hogan says everyone can ditch their face coverings once 70 percent of Maryland adults receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The state officially surpassed having 65 percent of adults inoculated on Tuesday. At 65.1 percent, Maryland is outpacing the national vaccination rate of 58.7 percent, data published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed.

At a press conference Wednesday, Hogan said that "we are well on our way to reaching" the 70-percent vaccination benchmark by Memorial Day weekend — which is ahead of President Joe Biden's national goal of July 4. Read more at Patch