People continue to enjoy dining and drinks in Cleveland as COVID-19 cases tick upward

Few people wearing masks in the Flats on Thursday night

People continue to enjoy dining and drinks in Cleveland as COVID-19 cases tick upward

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - COVID-19 cases are on the rise once again across the United States, including in Ohio.

Thursday seemed like a normal summer night in the Flats. The patios were crowded, and the drinks were flowing.

“There’s definitely still a weird feeling to it though,” said Bailee Openshaw. “Just being so out in the open and kind of going back to normal like nothing happened, but at the same time, I think we’ve all been waiting for this and just itching to get out and have that normalcy back.”

“For the most part everything seems back to normal,” said Breanna Gentile. “We’ve really all gone out almost every night downtown, West 6th an everything was pretty much the same crowded like usual.”

Ohio recorded the fourth largest increase in coronavirus cases during the pandemic Thursday, with nearly 900 new cases reported since Wednesday, but that doesn't worry 21-year-old Breanna Gentile.

“Us being so young and healthy it doesn’t really scare us too much,” Gentile said.

In the Flats some people were seen social distancing, others not so much.

“I have a PhD in psychology and there’s something about the brain of a younger person where they just don’t ever think they’re gonna be in trouble or they’re gonna get hurt, so I think that has a lot to do with why some younger people are taking chances that maybe people my age aren’t,” explained David Popple.

Almost no one wore a mask.

“I actually wear one all the time,” said Openshaw. “Any grocery store I go in to, I’m actually surprised I didn’t walk in here with one but it’s because I came in from the outside, but I wear mine in the office. I wear it on the way to the bathroom.”

The governor said expanding testing has played a role in the increase, but he said relaxing restrictions and opening businesses is also a big reason for the uptick in COVID-19 cases.

“I would be shocked if we didn’t go through another stay at home order and people started closing down again,” Openshaw said.

“I was actually just telling a couple of my friends I wanna go hard this weekend and go out and drink and get all of my partying out this weekend just in case they do close again,” said Gentile.

Gov. Mike DeWine also noted that there is a shift in cases involving younger people, about 60 percent of the new infections are in people 20 to 49 years old.

Copyright 2020 WOIO. All rights reserved.