People cool off from the heat at Newport Beach, California, on Saturday. Photo: Michael Heiman/Getty Images

President Trump said at a press briefing Friday that it's "exciting to see" parts of the country begin to reopen, but he's urging people to maintain physical distancing and use face coverings as the number of U.S. COVID-19 cases continues to rise along with the death toll.

The big picture: People flocked to newly reopened Ventura and Orange county beaches in Southern California Saturday, per the Los Angeles Times, which reports officials saying there were "few incidents." In Georgia and Oklahoma, businesses including salons and spas reopened Friday, while Alaska also eased restrictions on restaurants.

Here's a snapshot of some of the places taking tentative steps toward returning to life before the pandemic.

A hair salon in Atlanta, Georgia, on Friday. Photo: Tami Chappell/AFP via Getty Images
People enjoy the beach through the afternoon fog in Huntington Beach, California, on Saturday. Photo: Apu Gomes/AFP via Getty Images
A nail salon in Atlanta, Georgia, on Friday. Photo: Tami Chappell/AFP via Getty Images
A supervisor preparing bouys to guide boaters with the reopening of marinas in Freeport, New York, on April 21. Photo: J. Conrad Williams, Jr./Newsday RM via Getty Images
Jacksonville Beach, Florida, on April 19, after the local mayor reopened Duval County beaches following a drop in coronavirus cases. Photo: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

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In photos: Thousands evacuated as Southern California fire grows

A plane makes a retardant drop on a ridge on Aug. 2 at the Apple Fire north of Banning in Riverside County, which "doubled in size" on Aug. 1, per KTLA. Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A massive wildfire that prompted mandatory evacuations in Southern California over the weekend burned 26,450 acres and was 5% contained by Monday afternoon, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

The big picture: As California remains an epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., some 15 separate fires are raging across the state. About 7,800 people were under evacuation orders from the Apple Fire, about 75 miles east of Los Angeles, as hundreds of firefighters battled the blaze. CalFire said Monday that a malfunction involving a "diesel-fueled vehicle emitting burning carbon from the exhaust system" started the Apple Fire.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand now has active no coronavirus cases in the community after the final six people linked to the Auckland cluster recovered, the country's Health Ministry confirmed in an email Wednesday.

The big picture: The country's second outbreak won't officially be declared closed until there have been "no new cases for two incubation periods," the ministry said. Auckland will join the rest of NZ in enjoying no domestic restrictions from late Wednesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, declaring that NZ had "beat the virus again."

Updated Aug 5, 2020 - Science

In photos: Storm Isaias lashes the East Coast

Floodwaters in Muhlenberg Township, Pa., a result of Isaias moving along the East Coast on Tuesday. Photo: Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

Isaias became a post-tropical cyclone as it moved into southeast Canada late Tuesday after pummeling the East Coast for much of the day with heavy rains and wind —trigging tornadoes, floods and leaving millions without power. At least six people have lost their lives in the storm.

The big picture: Isaias made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane in North Carolina late Monday before being downgraded. It dumped heavy rain across Florida as a tropical storm over the weekend. On July 31, it lashed the Bahamas and parts of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic as a Category 1 hurricane.