Expanded capacity limits for events in Pa. started Monday

Lancaster

LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — New rules about gatherings in Pennsylvania went into effect Monday. Capacity limits for indoor events will be 50% and for outdoor events, it will be 75%.

The staff at Groff Event Center in Lancaster says they are very excited about the changes and are looking forward to May 31 when the limits are set to go away entirely.

“We are beyond ecstatic to get back to a sense of normalcy,” Dave Groff, co-owner of Groff Event Center said.

Groff Event Center hosts everything from bridal showers, baby showers, and weddings to local art shows.

“In the last few weeks, the number of phone calls and interests for venue rental has started to jump incrementally,” said Groff.

They can hold 200 people indoors at maximum capacity.

“It’s been this long 15-month journey if you will, and I think with what’s going to transpire on May 31st, we all will walk very slowly into this 100 percent capacity thing,” said Groff.

It’s something the General Manager with the Lancaster Barnstormers says they’ll be doing as well.

“On May 31st we’ll still have the three sections that will be socially distant, again just for those families that want to still take precautions and want to feel a little safer, more comfortable, but other than that, the stadium’s going to be wide open for use,” Michael Reynolds, Barnstormers General Manager said.

The stadium has just under 5,000 seats and while Reynolds admits it will likely take some time for all the fans to come back, these changes have led more people to call and schedule events, but that’s not all.

“We went down about a third, and we’re back up to about 75, 80 percent of what we were previously with full-time staff,” Reynolds said.

The home opener for the Barnstormers is June 4th with a free fan fest pre-season game this Saturday. Bottom line, organizers at several event spaces in the area say easing the capacity limits will open many more doors.

“We plan on having high school graduations, proms that we have scheduled. We have travel baseball programs coming through. We have a cornhole league. We have a kickball league. We have makers’ markets,” said Reynolds.

Governor Wolf says the changes Monday are meant to help local businesses, but Republican Senator Judy Ward has told us, she thinks moving up the timeline to the day before the primary election is a political move.

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