The mask order will be lifted, but businesses may continue to require them.

Governor Larry Hogan has announced that he will be finally lifting the State of Emergency put in place due to the coronavirus. The order has been in place since March 5, 2020, and will be officially lifted on Thursday, July 1, 2021, rescinding all restrictions and mandates, including the requirement to wear masks. This return to normal is possible due to high vaccination rates and a record low number of cases across the state. As of June 15, 2021, the seven-day positivity rate is at .82 percent, a record low.

At a press conference at the statehouse in Annapolis, Governor Hogan thanked the residents of Maryland for helping the state meet its vaccine goal and making it possible for him to lift the mandate.

“Thanks in large part to the hard work, the sacrifices, and the vigilance of the people of Maryland, we have finally reached the light at the end of that long tunnel,” said Governor Hogan. “Each and every one of you—your actions—have made this day possible. I am so proud of our state, and I’m grateful to have had this honor to serve as your governor. Thank you all for being Maryland Strong.”

As of July 1, 2021, Marylanders will no longer have to wear masks, inside or outside. Individual businesses still have the power to decide whether or not to require their patrons to wear masks. Schools, camps, and daycare facilities will also be able to lift mask requirements. Residents will have a 45-day grace to get current on things like driver’s licenses and license plate renewals. The governor is also extending the moratorium on evictions until August 15, 2021.

Maryland Go Vax mobile event at Seacrets in Ocean City, courtesy Patrick Siebert

Governor Hogan wanted to remind residents that once the mask mandate is lifted, those who have not been vaccinated will still be vulnerable to the deadly virus. He encouraged people to make an appointment at a pharmacy to get the vaccine, or take advantage of the state’s mobile Go Vax events, including the clinics during Orioles games over Father’s Day weekend.

How excited are you about "no masks"? Is there anything you'll miss about masks? Share in the comments.