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It's been a long 12 weeks for bars and restaurants that are eager to welcome back customers, regulars and staff that they may have not seen since the winter. 

Last Monday, though, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer gave the OK to allow bars and restaurants in Metro Detroit to open their doors and allow guests to drink and eat inside. Businesses must lower capacity by 50% and maintain social distancing. 

This gave businesses in the lower part of the state a week to shuffle from being closed completely, or just open for carryout, to resuming dine-in service. There's plenty to do, from organizing tables to be six feet apart, replenishing stock and setting the staff's schedule. 

Many restaurants have posted their new rules to social media in an attempt to communicate with customers before opening day. 

"Be nice. Follow the rules," reads a post from Imperial in Ferndale. The popular taco and tequila haven has been offering carryout for the past several weeks, and is opening Monday to let folks enjoy its full menu and margarita selection inside. 

They want customers to wear masks unless they are seated, wash hands thoroughly and to say home if sick. 

"We might remind you of the rules, don't be mad," says the post. "We're just looking out for everyone's well-being and safety." 

Before visiting your favorite eatery, call  or visit their social media site to see if reservations are required. Keep in mind large groups may not be permitted, and menus may be limited due to accessibility of ingredients. Most of all, be patient and kind. 

mbaetens@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @melodybaetens

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