By Ross Guidotti

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

WHEELING, W. Va. (KDKA) – Monday marks the first time in a long time that businesses in West Virginia can operate at 100% capacity, however, there are still some COVID-related restrictions in place.

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“I think it’s about time we open up,” Wheeling resident Bob Edgell said about West Virginia Governor Jim Justice’s lifting of COVID-related occupancy and attendance restrictions. He added, “It’s been demanding.”

It’s been demanding on customers looking to find a seat to eat. But for some food service businesses, it’s been crippling.

“We’ve gone through this for almost a whole year now,” said business owner Joe Coleman.

Tables were all but full Monday at Coleman’s Fish Market in Wheeling.

“We’re busy and we’re also a wholesaler. I’m very excited for all of our wholesale customers, the restaurants are opening up again, full capacity,” said Coleman.

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The occupancy rule changes impact nearly all aspects of life, from youth sports to gyms.

However, one COVID-related edict remains in place. Restaurants can pack them in, but you still have to wear a mask before you get your seat.

“Masks are great,” said Jodi Adams, who runs Wheeling’s Public Market.

She told KDKA she’s sure things will change when it comes to people going to restaurants and buying food, but the business model of curbside pick-up may be here to stay.

“I think people found a new convenience in that way of shopping,” she said.

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Many of the people KDKA’s Ross Guidotti spoke to say the true key to getting out of any and all restrictions relative to COVID-19 will be more vaccinations as well as folks continuing to wear their masks.