Effective Feb. 26, 2021, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper rescinded his modified stay-at-home order as part of Phase 3 of his three-phased approach to reopen the state for business. That mandate had required individuals to stay home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily. Beginning on Feb. 26, 2021, and continuing through March 26, 2021, people can be out of the house from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
The new order relaxes occupancy limits for indoor and outdoor gatherings. It also allows bars and nightclubs to open, with restrictions, for the first time since the early days of the pandemic. The statewide cutoff for in-person alcohol sales moves to 11 p.m. from 9 p.m under Cooper's latest order.
While Cooper keeps the state in Phase 3, he does allow an increase in indoor gatherings from 10 to 25 people, and he increases occupancy limits at businesses, restaurants, sports venues and entertainment venues (see bullet points below).
Meanwhile, the statewide face covering mandate, instituted in late June 2020, remains in effect. Gov. Cooper reminds everyone they need to continue practicing the Three W's (see graphic at top of page) while we remain in Phase 3. Here's what is currently in effect in Phase 3:
- Face coverings are mandatory for everybody over the age of 5, unless medical conditions apply
- Limits on gatherings are 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors
- Indoor facilities, including bars, nightclubs, movie theaters, indoor areas of amusement parks, meeting spaces and other venues can allow up to 30 percent capacity (maximum of 250 people)
- Restaurants, wineries, breweries, distilleries, retail stores, museums, aquariums, bowling alleys, fitness centers, salons and pools can allow up to 50 percent capacity
- Larger sports venues that seat more than 5,000 people can operate at 15 percent capacity
- Cutoff of alcohol sales for in-person consumption begins at 11 p.m. nightly
Gov. Cooper's face covering mandate requires people to wear face coverings when in public places (indoors or outdoors) where social distancing of at least 6 feet isn't possible. There are a few exceptions to the face mask mandate:
- Masks are not required for people in the same household outside in public, if they are able to social distance 6 feet from others
- Masks are not required for people with medical conditions and children under 5
- Masks are not required for people who are walking outdoors, or otherwise exercising, and maintaining a social distance of 6 feet from others
Surry County/Yadkin Valley, NC, has welcomed back visitors since May 22, 2020, when Gov. Cooper moved the state into Phase 2.
Most wineries, breweries, city parks, state parks, attractions, restaurants and accommodations continue to operate and welcome visitors. However, we do recommend calling ahead to these places to ensure they are open and inquire about any changes in hours of operation. Tourism is a vital part of our economy and we hope people will consider visiting our beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Like other NC destinations, we ask visitors to practice safe measures when in public spaces, including the Three Ws: wait six feet apart, wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds (or use hand sanitizer), and wear a face covering. Also, refrain from venturing into public places if experiencing a fever or signs of illness.
The visitor experience may be a bit different from place to place. Each winery, attraction and business has implemented protocols to provide a positive guest experience while being mindful of employee safety and overall public health. Please be patient. These protocols require an extra bit of effort by both employees and guests.
North Carolina's color-coded county alert system informs people where coronavirus spread is most prevalent.
If you are not yet comfortable returning to travel, feel free to use this website as a guide for planning future trips to Surry County/Yadkin Valley, NC.
COVID Updates from NC Government
Latest updates - https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/latest-updates