Northern Michigan reopens in time for Memorial Day weekend


LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– If you’re planning a long weekend to the Upper Peninsula or northern Michigan for Memorial Day, be ready for some changes.

Restaurants in Marquette are back in business with a few seats inside, but most of their customers are taking their drinks and desserts to go or on the patio.

“It’s been a little bit slow, and we totally understand that,” says barista Hanna Johnson. “But now that people can sit outside and enjoy their coffee, it’s been really really nice in here.”

It’s part of a phased approach to reopen the state. with restaurants opening for dine-in at 50 percent capacity and stores open with other restrictions. Locals say it’s a step in the right direction but they’re not ready to fully reopen yet. Instead, they’d rather take their time.

“We’re a little more conservative,” Marquette resident Lantz Whitfield says. “We’re gonna probably not do a lot of the things other people start to do for two or three or maybe even four weeks before we decide that that could happen. By then, we could be in a second wave. We just don’t know.”

Whether you’re local or just up north for a few days, state officials ask everyone to keep using safe practices like practicing social distancing and wearing masks.

“It’s always a concern. It’s a concern, definitely,” Traverse City resident Bill Chichester says. “But it’s just, if everybody uses common sense and in the guidelines, I think we’re gonna be good.”

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