capacity limits ontario

Capacity limits finally lifted further for events in Ontario

In what is a huge win for the live events sector, the Government of Ontario has further lifted capacity limits for certain settings, including indoor concert halls and organized outdoor events.

The announcement came into effect immediately on Wednesday, to the celebration of the music industry and other players who have had to abide by restrictions on audiences, even after caps were upped to 100 per cent for venues like sports games and cinemas on Oct. 9.

Spaces that don't have seating for attendees, such as Toronto's Lee's Palace and the Horseshoe Tavern, were not included in the earlier change, but the "seated" clause has now been removed, meaning numbers can finally be upped for standing shows.

The newly-loosened limits also apply to outdoor exhibitions and fairs, outdoor areas of museums, zoos and other attractions, ski hills, and large-scale outdoor events.

This means the return of things like Remembrance Day ceremonies and Santa Claus parades, at long-last. In these situations, residents must wear masks when physical distancing of at least two metres from others is not possible.

The public should also note that the limits for private social gatherings are still 100 outdoors and 25 people indoors.

Limits at food or drink establishments with dance facilities, such as nightclubs, also still remain in place at 25 per cent capacity or 250 people, whichever is less.

Settings like bath houses and strip clubs are also still subject to capacity limits — for now — while certain businesses such as museums and those offering personal care services can lift both caps and physical distancing requirements indoors if they require proof of vaccination for entry.

Proof of vaccination rules per the province's vaccine passport program (or per a business's own regulations) will remain in effect in virtually all public indoor settings until at least January.

Lead photo by

Jason Cook

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