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UPDATE: July 13, 2020 Masked entrance signs drive COVID-19 safety message home

Posted on Monday July 13, 2020
Mayor Clarke - City Entrance Sign masked
Mayor Steve Clarke stands in front of the newly masked Coldwater Road/Hwy 12 entrance sign to the City. The initiative reinforces the message of keeping Orillia safe by wearing a mask during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As of Monday, July 13, 2020 when you enter into a public indoor space or use Orillia Transit, you are required to wear a face covering under order of the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU). The City of Orillia has come up with a unique way to reinforce the message of keeping Orillia safe by wearing a mask during the COVID-19 pandemic by adorning City entrance signs with replica surgical masks.

Versions of the masked entrance signs are being installed in stages to promote and coincide with the public health order, which covers indoor spaces such as grocery stores, retail establishments, community centres, shopping malls, hair salons, libraries, places of worship, and public transit.

“The City of Orillia has been working very hard to keep our community safe,” said Mayor Steve Clarke. “At every opportunity, we are educating residents and visitors about the importance of staying vigilant in our fight against COVID-19. Basic principles of physical distancing, good hand hygiene and wearing a face covering are our greatest defense against a potential spike in the first wave, like we’ve seen in many parts of the U.S., or a second wave of the virus. The masked entrance signs into Orillia are a very creative and effective way to remind people that wearing a mask is an important way to protect themselves, their family and their neighbours.”

Spearheaded by the Economic Recovery Task Force’s “Stay Safe, Shop Local” team, the masked entrance initiative makes a bold statement that wearing a mask or face covering is the new normal.

A face covering means a medical or non-medial mask or other face covering, such as a bandana or scarf that covers the mouth and nose. Children under the age of two or those under five who cannot be persuaded, are not required to wear a face covering, as well as individuals whose health or ability, or cultural or religious reasons would prevent them from do so. No proof of exemption is required.

For more information on this public health order, please visit

For more information on the Economic Recovery Task Force (ERTF) and current initiatives, visit the ERTF webpage at

The City of Orillia is a city of 31,000 people in the heart of Orillia & Lake Country on the shores of Lake Couchiching and Lake Simcoe. Visit our website at



Coun. Ted Emond        
Chair, Economic Recovery Task Force

Dan Landry
Manager of BR&E and Industrial Development

Jennifer Ruff
Director of Business Development and Communications
705-238-9209 (cell)