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LAWRENCE, Kan. — As COVID-19 case numbers rise, Douglas County, Kansas will begin its indoor mask mandate on Friday. But it will only be effective until next Wednesday.

That could change if county commissioners decide to extend the public health order during their meeting Jan 12.

Many businesses down Massachusetts Street are requiring or recommending their customers to wear a mask.

“I think a mask is a sign of intelligence and so we’re all about the mask and have been,” Kathleen Swanson, owner of Swanson’s Lawrence, said.

While doing some weekend shopping in Lawrence, you’ll need to bring a partner with you, your mask.

The county said the 14-day moving average for new cases is at 89 cases per day, a record high for the county.

“So yes I’m all about protecting everybody and it’s such an easy fix,” Swanson said.

But the new rule is not a hassle for many business owners in Lawrence.

“I think it’s not just wearing the masks, but it’s the way people conduct themselves when they’re wearing the mask that’s different,” Bernadette Zacharias, owner of Goldmakers Fine Jewelry, said.

Zacharias said they’ve required masks since the pandemic began and she’s happy other businesses in the county will now require one.

“I think for some reason people don’t seem to wear them unless they’re required,” Zacharias said.

FOX4 also saw a couple of businesses Thursday that were closed due to COVID exposure.

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