MONTREAL -- Quebec’s health ministry has provided clarification on the new rules surrounding increased capacity at outdoor events just after the new measures came into effect.

On Friday, the limit for outdoor events and festivals was increased to a maximum of 5,000 people. In a news release issued Friday afternoon, the province clarified that for events with crowds that “remain relatively still, seated, or standing, but without assigned seating” the audience can be divided into sections of up to 500 people.

A distance of one metre must also be maintained during these large events, which also applies to cars at drive-in theatres, and a face mask must be worn when moving around from place to place.

Under previous health measures, the limit for outdoor events and festivals was 3,500, with groups of up 250 allowed. The old physical distancing rule, before Friday, was 1.5 metres between people.

In Montreal, promoter evenko has already announced that it will postpone the 2021 editions of its major festivals, including Osheaga, îleSoniq and Lasso Montreal. Festivals in Quebec City, however, are scheduled to take place this summer, with some planned for this week.

Quebec public health has previously denied the Montreal Canadiens' request to allow 10,500 fans in the stands for the Stanley Cup finals. The cap remains at 3,500 in the Bell Centre, citing a higher risk of transmission of COVID-19 among several people who likely are not fully vaccinated.

A free viewing party has been organized at the Quartier des spectacles in downtown Montreal for Friday's game.

With files from Rachel Lau