When will Michigan gyms, bowling alleys, movie theaters be allowed to reopen?

Whitmer asked about reopening businesses during COVID-19 briefing

Dumbbell weights at a gym.

LANSING, Mich. – When will gyms, bowling alleys and movie theaters be allowed to reopen throughout Michigan? Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was asked about those types of businesses during her Wednesday coronavirus (COVID-19) briefing.

“I know that there are legitimate anxieties that are out there,” Whitmer said. “Much sacrifice has been made, and I respect the business owners who are worried about how and when they can safely reengage, and that’s something that I think is really important to reiterate: This has been a hard time for everyone.”

Whitmer said during the briefing that Michiganders can expect an official announcement about gyms, organized sports and other businesses “in the coming days.”

Gym, bowling alley and movie theater owners have been vocal about asking Whitmer when they can reopen. Last week, she said she wouldn’t be bullied into making a decision before the science supported reengaging those parts of Michigan’s economy.

“I think we’ve made a lot of progress in our state with confronting COVID-19,” Whitmer said Wednesday. “As we look to engage additional sectors, it’s going to be really important that we continue to watch the science.

“We will be making some determinations in the very near future.”

Whitmer said following the science and keeping certain businesses closed is part of the reason Michigan is in a stronger position in terms of positive COVID-19 cases, compared to the rest of the country.

“We have to get this right,” Whitmer said. “We take this very seriously, and the decisions that I will make in the coming days and announce are made in a way that will be protecting athletes and families and coaches and parents and patrons, or small business owners, as well. People’s lives are at stake. COVID-19 is still a very real threat all across our state. I will continue to treat it like that.”

Numbers by region

The overall number of positive COVID-19 cases per million people per day in the state of Michigan is at 59, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun said. That number has declined in the last week.

The region with the highest case rate is still the Detroit Region, which is currently at 66 cases per million people per day. Khaldun said the case rate in the Detroit Region is declining, however.

The Grand Rapids Region is at 59 cases per million people per day. Khaldun said the case rate is increasing.

In the Saginaw Region, officials are reporting 56 cases per million people per day, and that number has decreased, Khaldun said.

The Kalamazoo Region is at 50 cases per million people per day, but the case rate is trending upward, according to authorities.

Case rates in the Traverse City Region and Upper Peninsula have increased over the last week to 40 cases per million people per day, she said.

Both the Jackson and Lansing regions are under 40 cases per million people per day and declining, Khaldun said.

The overall positive test rate in Michigan is at 3.1%, which has decreased in the last two weeks, she said.

Michigan is performing 30,000 tests per day, which was fifth in the United States last week, according to Khaldun.

More coverage

Here’s much more recent coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whitmer’s handling of pandemic:

Reopening Michigan:

Health questions, advice:




Individual stories:


About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.