With Stage 2 of BC’s COVID restart plan now officially underway, Don and Bev Wilden are among the first in line at BC Ferries’ Swartz Bay terminal.
“We are very happy that they opened it today, one of our grandsons is finishing high school so this is where we head to graduation and see it inside “said Bev Wilden.
Tuesday was the first day people could travel freely in the province and within hours people were lining up for a chance to leave the island and reconnect with friends and family. For some, it’s been over a year.
“We’ll see if they remember us,” Wilden joked.
BC Ferries says bookings have been on the rise since Monday, when BC announced it was moving to Stage 2 of its restart plan. Additional crossings have already been added for this coming weekend.
In addition to now permitted travel within the province, high-intensity indoor adult fitness classes may resume, indoor sports games are permitted, and you may have up to 50 spectators at the outdoor sports games. You can also accommodate up to 50 people in your garden.
Cinemas are also allowed to reopen.
At Blue Bridge Repertory Theater in Victoria, they are on their first day of rehearsals for their new show Salt-Water Moon. Hearing that they will now be able to perform it live in front of up to 50 people, rather than just a live streaming camera, is music to their ears.
“There is nothing more lonely than being an artist in an empty room, right? A big part of the live theater experience is the interaction between the actors and the audience and the audience with each other, ”said artistic director Brian Richmond.
Fifty is a start, but Richmond says that while the limits are increased further this summer during Stage 3, he doesn’t expect a large following to return just yet.
“We expect it to be a little slower process than that and I think we will have to move on to fully vaccinating the wider population until things start to get back to normal for us. “, did he declare.
In theaters across the province, Tuesday was opening day and crowds were already coming out.
“We have about 14 of our sold-out shows with a capacity of 50 people,” said SilverCity Tillicum CEO Rob Denison.
COVID protocols will remain in place in theaters, but many of them who have been to their first show in months say it’s worth it.