In a rare statewide address, Gov. Jared Polis said he is extending Colorado's stay-at-home order another two weeks to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Speaking from the governor's mansion, Polis said he will lift the restrictions sooner than April 26 if he feels it's safe.
"The better job we do of staying in, the sooner we'll be able to go back out," Polis said. "I know this isn't easy. But if we all do our part, we can beat this virus and get back to living our lives."
He said April will forever be known as the "lost month." But he said social distancing efforts have been effective at slowing the spread of the virus.
"There will be a day in the not-too-distant future when we can physically be together once again," Polis said. "When we can go to bars and restaurants, attend schools and universities, churches and temples. When grandparents can hug their grandchildren without fear of getting sick. When we can once again feel the wind against our face as we ski down our favorite ski runs and hike our favorite trails.
"But that day is not today," Polis continued. "Nor is it tomorrow."
Polis said Coloradans "need to dig deep into our souls to muster the resolve, the courage, the fortitude to carry on and do our patriotic duty as generations have done before."
And that means staying at home except to make essential trips.
He also reiterated his call for all residents to wear non-medical, cloth masks when going out in public.
Polis called COVID-19 one of the most dire threats Coloradans have faced in their lives.
He also warned the stay-at-home order could be extended again if people don't follow it and the death toll continues to rise.
He spoke shortly after the number of people hospitalized by the virus in the state neared 1,000.
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