People have mixed emotions as outdoor mask rules lifted for those vaccinated against COVID-19

ATLANTA — With less than two months until the official start of summer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is relaxing the rules when it comes to when we wear our masks.

As of Tuesday, Americans who have been fully vaccinated no longer need to wear a mask outside while participating in activities like walking, running, hiking or biking.

The CDC also stated it’s now safe to not wear your mask while dining at an outdoor restaurant with friends from multiple households. The same goes for attending small gatherings, such as a family barbecue.

But before you ditch your mask for good, the CDC is still recommending that you wear a mask when attending a crowded outdoor event like a Braves game or a concert.

They’re also urging everyone to wear a mask while dining indoors at a restaurant or flying on an airplane.

Channel 2 Action News went to Smyrna on Tuesday afternoon, where city officials lifted their mask mandate on Monday.


People who live there have mixed emotions about the move.

“I think everybody should wear a mask because it’s serious. People are dying and stuff. This is a real thing, you know?” said Alicia Johnson.

“I think that’s great that Smyrna is lifting the mask mandate. I think that’s our first step to getting back to sort of normalcy, and I’m really excited for our community to have that,” said Margaret Szarowicz.

Even though the city is done with the mask mandate, businesses still have the option to require customers and employees to wear them.

Channel 2′s Michael Seiden contacted Live Nation, which operates the three largest outdoor concert venues in metro Atlanta.

A company spokesperson sent him a statement on Tuesday, saying:

“We remain in communication with local officials and given the changing landscape will offer updates through our website and social media as we have more information to share. Of course, the health and safety of our fans, artists, staff and community is our number one priority and will be planned for accordingly.”

Next month, the state’s eight mass vaccination sites will shut down by May 21. According to the state, an increase in supply has made it easier to find a shot at area pharmacies or doctors.

“Finally, and a sense of relief. We’ve known for some time, even before we had the vaccine, that likelihood of spreading or contracting COVID-19 outside was very remote,” said Dr. Cecil Bennett, medical director of Newnan Family Medicine. “What we really need to look at is showing people who are not vaccinated the freedoms of being vaccinated.”