PATCHOGUE VILLAGE

Local officials celebrate outdoor dining return with a beer

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Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone visited Blue Point Brewing Co. Wednesday after finishing off a day of traveling around the county meeting business owners and residents enjoying the reopening of certain businesses in New York's second phase.

"It's a reopening, it's a new beginning," Bellone told the Advance. "This is a big day."

Bellone joined Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri and Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce director David Kennedy for a beer at Blue Point's outdoor pavilion. Outdoor dining was approved earlier this month to be part of the phase 2 reopening guidance at 50 percent capacity.

"It is palpable the energy and excitement of people to be out and about after being couped up for months and do simple, normal things," Bellone said.

Phase 2 of the New York Forward plan began Wednesday with businesses like hair salons, restaurants (outdoor only) and retail opening doors to customers for the first time since mid-March.

"This really marks the beginning of what we know will be a long recovery, but given what I've seen today, I'm very confident we're going to be able to fully recover," Bellone said.

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