On Valentine's Day Governor Andrew Cuomo showed some love for establishments such as gyms, fitness centers, casinos and billiard halls as well as other State Liquor Authority-licensed establishments by extending their closing times from 10pm to 11pm. That closing time matches an extension of closing times for restaurants and bars that Cuomo announced Friday.

According to NY.gov, this extension is possible due to the continued decline in hospitalization and infection rates throughout New York State.

WIVB4 quotes the Governor as saying:

“Hospitalizations and the positivity rate continue to decline, and with the holiday surge now in our rear-view mirror, we must keep taking steps to further re-open the economy safely and responsibly.”

“Accordingly, I have already signed an Executive Order to move the closing times for restaurants and bars to 11 p.m. statewide, and now we will do the same for gyms and fitness centers, casinos, billiards halls and any other location with an SLA license. As we move forward, we will continue to follow the science and data and take these kinds of steps to help us finally return to normal.”

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My girlfriend and I went out for a Valentine's lunch, because I forgot to make dinner reservations. Prior to lunch I tried to find a place, somewhere in the Capital Region, that had a table for 2 available for dinner and it proved to be an impossible task. That is good news for area restaurants.

Our lunch was socially distant and we felt very safe. I am hoping the extension gives area businesses a bit of a sorely needed boost, as long as we continue to move in the direction of health and safety for everyone.


LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.