Governor Roy Cooper has announced the entire state of North Carolina will remain paused in the Safer at Home Phase 2 through Friday, Sept. 11, at the earliest. Face coverings must still be worn in public places.

Face coverings are required at all times while in public, both indoors and outdoors, when unable to maintain a 6-foot distance from others. This requirement includes all employees and customers of retail businesses, restaurants and personal care businesses. Exceptions include people with medical conditions, children under 11, and people who are walking or exercising outside.

Phase 2 still recommends staying at home when possible, limiting nonessential travel and practicing social distancing. It allows restaurants, barbers, salons and swimming pools to remain open at a 50% capacity. Gatherings are still generally limited to no more than 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors. Museums, gyms, bars, and entertainment venues such as theaters and many animal parks remain closed.

If traveling is necessary, individuals are encouraged to check with local tourism organizations to determine if any limitations are in place. (e.g. visitor center closures), and to contact lodging establishments directly for their most up-to-date information. Current destinations with various limitations in place can be found here. Please use your best judgment if traveling, and practice good hygiene while avoiding close contact with others.

More information about local restaurant resources specific to North Carolina destinations can be found via their local tourism organization, which can be found here. As you enjoy dining out once again, visit Count On Me NC to find out what you can do as a guest to help keep everyone safe and healthy, and also learn how businesses are making improvements to do the same.

For more information on North Carolina relating to coronavirus, visitors can go to the website for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.