The Maryland Department of Commerce has launched the #MasksOnMaryland campaign to encourage residents as well as visitors to the state to wear masks properly, practice social distancing and adhere to Centers of Disease Control hygiene practices in order to fight a surge of COVID-19 cases. The campaign, which features the tagline “Only You Can Keep Maryland Open for Business,” includes a series of announcements being aired throughout the state on radio stations, as well as social media outreach.

“The actions of Maryland residents were instrumental in flattening the curve this spring and allowed our State to respond in a proactive manner,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “With similar dedication during stage two of Maryland’s Roadmap to Recovery, we now strive to keep Maryland businesses open and keep our citizens employed. Everyone is reminded that only you can keep Maryland open for business.”

The radio spots were developed with Maryland Commerce’s Office of Tourism and tourism industry partners, in coordination with the Maryland Department of Health and Governor Hogan’s office.

The campaign is broadcasting in every region of Maryland and the Washington, D.C., suburbs and will also contain a robust social media component. Among the first announcements crafted were two produced in partnership with the Baltimore Ravens tight end starter Mark Andrews, who urges fans to “Protect the Flock,” and Brandon Hyde, manager for the Baltimore Orioles, who encourages listeners to “take the lead” to keep our friends and neighbors “in the game.”

Maryland’s travel and hospitality industry was particularly hard hit. Restaurants had to pivot from seating diners indoors to curbside pick-up and outdoor dining as a way to keep their employees working and still be of service to their customers.

“Restaurateurs across Maryland enhanced their already strict sanitation practices, added outdoor seating areas, restructured their indoor seating to increase physical distance, and ensured that staff wear masks and are tested often,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “As the summer travel season continues, we are asking everyone to help keep your favorite businesses open by wearing masks and abiding by social distancing requirements. We need everyone to participate to be successful.”

The #MasksOnMaryland campaign will also work with social media influencers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to spread the message and encourage travelers to post pictures at businesses and destinations that have masked their iconic mascots, characters, sculptures, etc. by using one or all of the hashtags #MasksOnMaryland; #MDinFocus; #PhysicalDistancing. One example is the masked ‘Forever Marilyn’ art sculpture at National Harbor.

For more information on COVID-19 resources, FAQ’s and the Maryland Roadmap to Recovery, visit https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/.

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