As the temperatures warm up and the COVID-19 restrictions are eased, the mayor of Merrickville is asking visitors to respect the COVID-19 pandemic measures.
Merrickville is not the place to come and think boy lets go there and do a walkabout, said Doug Struthers, Mayor of Merrickville in an interview with CTV News at Six.
Thats not what were open for. Were open for the businesses that are allowed to open and have curbside pickup.
The historic town along the Rideau Canal reports a sudden increase in the number of visitors over the past couple of weeks as the temperatures warmed up during the pandemic. The mayor says when the temperature hit 20C last weekend, there was a bit of influx of visitors looking to go for a drive.
A lot of people that were not understanding you cant wander around. Our streets are not here for getting your daily healthy exercise.
The mayor says there has been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Merrickville since the pandemic began. With businesses in Ontario allowed to open on Monday for curbside pickup only, Struthers is hoping visitors will respect the COVID-19 restrictions put in place by the Ontario Government.
Weve worked hard, we dont want any surprises when people come to visit. You need to understand the rules and respect the rules and I think that can happen, said Struthers.
That message needs to be underscored. We are still under provincial emergency guidelines – stay home, isolate, self-distance. And if you are going to go shopping in a business thats open, know what the rules are. The businesses do, but you as a visitor, a day-tripper, a customer, you need to make sure you follow the orders, follow the guidelines.
Struthers notes the messaging from the Ontario Government has been to limit your trips to essential trips only.
The town of Merrickville notes its narrow 19th century streetscapes, beautiful stone architecture and storefronts with doors and windows adjacent to the sidewalks leaves little room for pedestrians to stay two metres apart from each other.