Re-openings some good news for Kenora-Rainy River

These last two weeks have been full of well-deserved good news for the people of Kenora–Rainy River. Earlier this week, our government announced that on Friday, June 12, the Northwest will be moving into Stage 2, as a part of a greater plan to safely reopen Ontario. This much anticipated reopening will include outdoor dining services at restaurants and bars, camp grounds, tour and guide services, water recreational facilities, beaches, drive-ins, sports fields, and – highly requested by many – barber shops and hair salons. These businesses and services will all be operating with proper health and safety measures in place. On Friday, places of worship will also be permitted to reopening under the condition that they operate at 30% building capacity and maintain social distancing. People and businesses have shown again and again that they are able and willing to adapt and respond to the health and safety guidelines laid out by our local health officials, and I am proud to see our hardworking businesses open for business once again.
Last week, we started the weekend with the news that short-term rentals, including lodges, cabins, cottages, homes, condominiums and B&Bs were to resume operations, starting last Friday, June 5. We heard the concerns of tourism operators in the Northwest and took action to open more seasonal businesses who can operate in compliance with health and safety guidelines. The tourism sector plays a critical role in Northwestern Ontario’s economy, and we will continue to support the sector during these challenging times.
As we begin to enjoy the summer weather, I want to thank all the residents of Kenora-Rainy River for their continued cooperation and patience as we continue to follow social distancing guidelines. This summer will be like none other before, but we are making good progress and we will all get through this together.