WINDSOR, ONT. -- Advancing to Stage 2 is news many Leamington and Kingsville business owners have been waiting to hear for nearly two weeks.

They are the last remaining communities in Ontario still in Stage 1 of Ontario’s reopening plan. Both municipalities can move into Stage 2 on Tuesday. Ontario Premier Doug Ford made the announcement on Monday.

Co-owner/operator of Jose’s Bar and Grill in Leamington Donny Pacheco says he was very happy with the news.

“Getting pretty emotional right now because this is what we’ve been waiting for,” says Pacheco. “We need to get back open for our staff, for our families and our community as a whole coming together.”

The towns were held back due to the high number of COVID-19 cases in the agri-farm sector. The five other Windsor-Essex municipalities moved to Stage 2 on June 25.

The next stage includes several areas, including reopening hair salons and restaurants are allowed to outdoor patios.

Pacheco says he is gearing up for more business.

“First call is going to be to my food supplier,” he says. “I need to bump those orders up for tomorrow.”

He says he has everything on the line as a small business owner.

“You’re trying to get things done at home, you’re trying to do this, you’re trying to do that, you’re trying to be everything to everybody, you’re trying to be that strong person too right? So, I needed this. I really needed this,” adds Pacheco.

With files from Ricardo Veneza.