Happy Mother's Day: Lowcountry restaurants now offering outdoor dining

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Mother's Day might be a pared down celebration this year, but if your tradition has been to take mom out for brunch, you're in luck in the Lowcountry. Outdoor dining regulations were lifted Friday by S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster, leaving the decisions on when to open to local restaurant owners. This week, local restaurant managers said seeing customers sitting down for meals was a welcome start to their journey back to normal.

Because outside seating is limited, calling ahead for reservations on Mother's Day is highly recommended. Local restaurant owners are still encouraging takeout in order to accommodate everyone who wants to be served.While the governor did not mandate restaurants use disposable plates and cutlery, some restaurant owners consider it to be safest. Others don't want to use single use cutlery, plates and glasses because they go against the Lowcountry's focus on environmentalism.McMaster put in place the following guidelines for restaurants seeking to open outdoor seating: Spacing tables at least 8 feet apart; limiting groups to 8 people or fewer; eliminating gatherings in the building when entering or exiting outdoor seating area; maintaining strict social and physical distancing guidelines; sanitizing tables, chairs and seats after every customer.The S.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association has asked McMaster to allow indoor dining starting on May 18, giving restaurants time to rehire employees and order needed supplies and food. He has not announced an indoor reopening date yet.