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Gov. Cooper announces Phase 3 will begin Friday

With North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper’s Safer at Home Phase 2.5 Executive Order set to expire on Friday, October 2, he announced today that due to leveling COVID19 cases in the state, North Carolina will move into Phase 3.

“Our top priority remains getting children back to in-person learning. This month marks a major shift for many families now and in the coming months as schools open their doors, some for the first time since the pandemic,” said Governor Cooper. “The virus continues to spread, so we must take the next steps methodically, and responsibly.”

Phase 3 of the state’s reopening plan is the final step of Cooper’s three-part plan to reopen businesses and resume social activities during the pandemic.

“So we’re going to need to double down on our work to slow the spread of the virus to keep us on the right track,” Dr. Mandy Cohen said. “We are stable, but fragile.”
Phase 3, which will begin on Friday at 5 p.m. does not mean the state is open at full capacity, however, it does allow previously closed businesses such as movie theaters and bars to reopen.

Limits that will change under Phase 3:

  • Large outdoor venues with seating greater than 10,000 can operate at 7% capacity. (previously announced)
  • Bars, nightclubs and dance halls can operate outdoors only at 30% capacity or 100 customers, whichever is less.
  • Music halls and venues for live performances can operate at 30% capacity of 100 customers, whichever is less.
  • Movie theaters can operate at 30% capacity or 100 customers per movie screening, whichever is less.
  • The outdoor parts of amusement parks can operate at 30% capacity.

Current limits that will remain the same under Phase 3:

  • Alcohol sales for on-site consumption are banned after 11 p.m.
  • The North Carolina face-covering mandate is still in place.
  • Mass gathering limits remain at 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors.

This executive order will be in place unless otherwise changed or its expiration date on Friday, Oct. 23.

To read the full executive order, click here.

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