It will be a Canada Day to remember.
With 70 per cent of Albertans eligible to get their COVID-19 vaccination having done so, Okotoks and the province is open for business.
Yes, Okotokians can hang out, go to church, visit relatives and live the high-life a bit as restrictions have been lifted.
It’s been a long road, and there are still plenty of bumps to go on the COVID-19 journey.
Some businesses have been lost in the community over the past 15 months as COVID-forced restrictions were too much to overcome.
Fortunately, thanks to good old determination and stick-to-it-ness many have survived.
In fact, there have been some that started in the midst of the pandemic.
Those businesses in the community will now need Foothills and Okotoks residents’ help more than ever as they try to climb out of the COVID-19 economic hole.
It’s been a tough go as businesses, particularly restaurants, gyms, hairstylists and those in the personal services, have seen ever-changing rules to the game — limited seating, takeout only, only personal trainer — and don’t sweat — to complete lockdowns altogether for some.
The announcement of less restrictions doesn’t guarantee these businesses success, but it does provide them a sense of stability and the ability to plan for the future.
It gives them the chance to do what they wanted to do when they opened their businesses.
Okotoks isn’t out of the woods yet but there is a glimmer of hope, something that wasn’t there six months ago.
So enjoy Canada Day. Sit down at your favourite restaurant and have a beer or go to the gym for a workout.
You deserve it. But also those businesses deserve it.