Easter marks the first major holiday being celebrated a second time since the pandemic began.
Many North Texans are spending the weekend traveling or getting out with family and friends, but doctors warn it’s too soon for people to let their guard down.
“The CDC suggests that we can gather more confidently and safely together as that family unit that's been vaccinated,” said Dr. Mark Cassanova, president of the Dallas County Medical Society. “But even those who have been vaccinated, when you're out in general public, please continue to wear your mask.”
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For many out celebrating this weekend, thoughts of what they have endured over the past year are top of mind.
“I mean it’s really surreal, everything changed a year ago and no one really expected it,” said Isabella Moore, a visitor to Klyde Warren Park in Dallas. “It hit me really hard, both mentally and physically.”
Moore was vaccinated Friday and said she's surprised by the number of people out who refuse to wear a mask.
“It’s upsetting because the pandemic isn’t gone yet, but people do what they please so I guess that can’t be changed,” she said.
Airline travel at North Texas airports this weekend is expected to be exponentially higher than it was last year. At Dallas Love Field in 2020, fewer than 1,000 travelers per day passed through over Easter weekend. This year, there will be more than 40,000 passengers passing through the security checkpoint from Thursday through Sunday.
Shoppers are also out in full force after many retailers – including Target – announced they would be closed on Easter Sunday.
“Let's not forget the lessons we've learned, keep those masks on and still maintain that handwashing, social distancing, especially if you've been vaccinated. Activities can be made safer by those individual decisions,” Cassanova said.
Individual decisions that many people said would cause them to wear a mask and maintain social distance for the sake of others.
“I feel a little safer because I’m vaccinated but he’s not vaccinated and my family’s not vaccinated so I’m just kind of taking precautions for other people,” Dallas resident Chi Vu said.
“It’s not necessarily just for us, it’s for other people in the community is our main concern. We might not be as susceptible to some of the problems but that doesn’t mean we should be concerned about others who are,” Dallas resident David Westfall said.