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'It just feels wonderful' | Restaurants, malls, beaches reopen before the weekend

The month of May marks a brand new look for the Lone Star State. In Houston, some malls are open, and restaurants are finally seating customers.

HOUSTON — Friday was a big day for Texas and Harris County. It’s the first day in over a month we were not being asked to stay home.

Beaches were busy. Dog parks opened to pups.

The month of May marks a brand new look for the Lone Star State. In Houston, some malls are open, and restaurants are finally seating customers.

“It just feels wonderful, and all of the staff is excited," Cuchara Restaurant Owner Ana Beavan said.

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At Cuchara, doors opened at 11 a.m. Friday. Beavan said they’re not as busy as she’d like to be, but she’s hoping this weekend will be better.

They’re spacing out tables, using disposable menus, and all are wearing masks.

Her message to those going out this weekend:

“Now that you can be out, be respectful, be proper, follow the regulations and everyone will be fine," Beavan said.

Cuchara is reopening with their normal business hours and menu, allowing walk-ins at 25 percent capacity.

But some restaurants, like Lucille’s, are more restrictive. Lucille's Restaurant posted online that they’re opening Saturday, seating customers only on their patio and only by reservation.

The sunny weekend might make you want to head outside. If you’re hoping to grab a spot in Galveston, the beach patrol says they expect to get very busy this weekend. 

Galveston Police have a special task force dedicated to making sure people keep their distance on the beach.

And while movie theaters can open Friday, many are not, including AMC, Alamo Drafthouse, Cinemark, Regal Cinemas and Studio Movie Grill.

But if you're heading out or staying in, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo says just because it may seem like life is back to normal, don’t let your guard down yet. 

“It’s impossible to pull a date out of thin air and say to the virus, ‘We’re ready for you to go away now.’ That’s not how it works," Hidalgo said.

Harris County Fire Marshal's Office says they’ve received over 60 complaints on their phone line Friday over businesses not following the governors orders, but they did not write any citations.

Coronavirus symptoms

The symptoms of coronavirus can be similar to the flu or a bad cold. Symptoms include a fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Some patients also have nausea, body aches, headaches and stomach issues. Losing your sense of taste and/or smell can also be an early warning sign.

Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were mild.

But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk for becoming seriously ill. However, U.S. experts are seeing a significant number of younger people being hospitalized, including some in ICU.

The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.

Human coronaviruses are usually spread through...

  • The air by coughing or sneezing
  • Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
  • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.

Help stop the spread of coronavirus

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Eat and sleep separately from your family members
  • Use different utensils and dishes
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your arm, not your hand.
  • If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
  • Follow social distancing

Lower your risk

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • If you are 60 or over and have an underlying health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes or respiratory illnesses like asthma or COPD, the World Health Organization advises you to try to avoid crowds or places where you might interact with people who are sick.

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