ST. PAUL (KMHL) – Gov. Tim Walz announced Wednesday evening that he is lifting the stay at home order on May 18. The move will allow Minnesota retailers to open up to 50 percent capacity.

Walz also thanked Minnesotans for making sacrifices. He said those actions have saved the lives of thousands of Minnesotans and bought the state’s healthcare providers valuable time.

“There’s no stopping the storm of COVID-19 from hitting Minnesota, but we’re prepared for it,” said Walz.

Walz also laid out guidance for bars, restaurants, gyms and other entertainment venues to open June 1.

The governor encouraged those at high risk to continue to stay home. He says those with underlying health conditions and the elderly to stay at home.

“We are still in the heart of this pandemic,” said Walz. “And this can go in a bad direction very quickly. We must keep this virus at a simmer and not a boil.”

He asked Minnesotans to continue to work from home if they can, wear masks when they shop and to gather in groups of 10 or less and keep six feet apart.