Staying Ahead of the Curve: Phase 3

Under the terms of  Executive Order No. 188, North Carolina’s Modified Stay At Home Order requiring people to remain home between 10 p.m. – 5 a.m. has been extended until 5 p.m. on January 29, 2021. Other safety measures issued through Executive Order No. 181 remain in place: the statewide mask mandate, closure of indoor bars, and limits on mass gatherings and retail establishment capacity.

Below are frequently asked questions (“FAQs”) and their answers. In addition, individuals should check with local governments to determine whether additional restrictions have been imposed in their local jurisdictions to limit the spread of COVID-19.This information is subject to change in light of new CDC guidance and additional Executive Orders, further agency guidance, or local government declarations.

The Davie County Chamber of Commerce and many Davie County businesses are participating in the Count on Me NC program in order to support the hard work our state has been doing to flatten the curve.

The Count on Me NC Program is a mutual pledge and public health initiative that empowers guests and businesses to help keep everyone safe and protected and you can read more about how Davie County is keeping visitors safer here.

Under This Order

Under this order, all individuals in North Carolina must stay at home or at the place they will stay for the night between 10 p.m. and  5 a.m. except for: 

  • Travel to or from a place of work or performing work at the workplace or other location directed by the employer
  • Travel for work purposes
  • Travel to obtain groceries, take-out food, medical care, fuel, health care supplies, or social services
  • Travel from a business that closed at or after 10 p.m.
  • Travel to a business that will open at or after 5 a.m.
  • Travel to take care of a family member, friend, or pet in another household
  • Travel necessary for purposes of personal safety
  • Travel into or out of the state
  • Travel required by law enforcement or court order
  • Using or providing shared transportation (including without limitation taxicabs, rideshares, buses, trains, airplanes, and travel to airports, train stations, or bus stations 

Establishments that are subject to this order include amusement parks and amusement transportation; bars, lounges, indoor venues, and arenas; fitness and physical activity facilities, movie theaters, meeting spaces, and other entertainment facilities; museums and aquariums; parks; personal care businesses; restaurants, breweries, distilleries, and wineries; and certain retail businesses.

The order requires restaurants, bars, entertainment venues, personal care businesses, and others to end all on-premises services at 10 p.m. Take-out, delivery, drive-thru, and curbside services are permitted during the curfew hours.

The order also stops on-premises alcohol sales at 9 p.m. whether at a bar, restaurant, or by a vendor.

Retail businesses that sell groceries, medication, health care supplies, and fuel may remain open between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

The order also grants authority for law enforcement officers to cite people or businesses that fail to follow these requirements.

What Remains the Same

  • A face covering is still required in all public indoor settings if there are non-household members present, regardless of the individual’s ability to maintain social distance. Face coverings continue to be required in public outdoor settings if individuals are unable to maintain six feet of social distance from non-household members. This requirement applies to all people at least five years old unless an exception applies and is recommended for all people over the age of two years old.
  • Large retail businesses with more than 15,000 square feet are required to have an employee stationed near entrances to ensure mask-wearing and to implement occupancy limits for patrons who enter.
  • The indoor mass gathering limit remains at 10.
  • The outdoor mass gathering limit remains at 50.
  • Fitness and exercise facilities remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Restaurants remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Personal care businesses remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Museums and aquariums remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Movie theaters remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Arenas and performing arts centers remain open, subject to stated capacity limits and other requirements.
  • Meeting spaces in hotels, conference centers, meeting halls, and receptions venues may host receptions, meetings, and other functions, subject to capacity limits and other restrictions.
  • The outdoor areas of amusement parks may reopen, subject to capacity limits and other restrictions.
  • Indoor rides at amusement parks remain closed.
  • Bars’ outdoor seating areas remain open, subject to reduced capacity limits and other restrictions.
  • Indoor bar areas remain closed.
  • Music halls, night clubs, lounges, adult entertainment, venues for live performances, and arenas with spectators where guests are seated remain open, subject to reduced capacity limits.
  • Very Large Outdoor facilities with a capacity of more than 10,000 Guests remain open at 7% of the facility’s total seating capacity, if they meet certain requirements.
  • Face coverings are still required in public when it is not possible to maintain social distancing from non-household members.

Which gatherings or other events are not subject to the 10-person indoor Mass Gathering Limit?

  • Worship, religious, spiritual gatherings, wedding ceremonies, funeral services, and other First Amendment activities
  • Gatherings for work or for receiving governmental services
  • Gatherings at places that are subject to other capacity limits stated in the Executive Orders. These include fitness and exercise facilities, restaurants, personal care businesses, museums and aquariums, movie theaters, hotels, conference centers, and reception venues.
  • Normal operations at airports, bus and train stations or stops, medical facilities, libraries, shopping malls and shopping centers.
  • Families of more than ten people who reside together.

Which gatherings or other events are subject to the 10-person indoor Mass Gathering Limit?

  • Indoor in-home gatherings
  • Indoor in-home social events
  • All other indoor gatherings not otherwise exempted from the Executive Order


Why is this Order necessary now?

In recent weeks, North Carolina has experienced record highs in the daily COVID-19 case count, hospitalizations, and deaths. There has also been a significant and sustained increase in the percentage of positive COVID-19 tests and emergency room visits for COVID-19 associated symptoms. The measures in this Order are necessary to save lives and preserve healthcare system capacity and healthcare resources for the critically ill.

Temporary Night-Time Public Closure Period.

Does this Order close any business completely?

No. This Order temporarily requires certain businesses to close their premises to the public from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m., during the Night-Time Public Closure Period. Establishments may remain open during those hours for workers, and may otherwise conduct their business and operations, as long as no guests are admitted onto the premises.

May my employees remain on site to stock the store, do bookkeeping, or other necessary business after 10 p.m. or before 5 a.m.?

Yes. This Order only requires closure to the public during the night-time closure period. Workers may remain on premise at the business to conduct necessary operations. During that time, businesses and facilities must still adhere to the applicable public health restrictions in the Order, including the face covering requirement.

Does this Order impose restrictions on office buildings and other professional work settings?

No. If a worker’s presence is required by his or her employer, that worker may remain on the premises and conduct their normal business operations during the Night-Time Public Closure Period, as long as no clients or customers are permitted onto the premises. During that time, businesses and facilities must still adhere to the applicable public health restrictions in the Order, including the face covering requirement for their employees.

Are movie theaters and other live performances required to cease from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.?

Yes, movies, live entertainment performances, and entertainment events must cease or pause no later than 10:00 p.m. There is an exception to the 10:00 p.m. cut-off time for professional and collegiate athletic events that are already scheduled during the effective period of this Order.

May customers come inside a restaurant to pick up take-out orders?

Yes. Customers may enter restaurants, breweries, distilleries, and wineries to pick up take-out orders after 10 p.m. Customers must wear a face covering and practice social distancing.

May third-party delivery services, such as Instacart, UberEats, DoorDash, and others continue to operate during the Night-Time Public Closure Period?

Yes. Third-party delivery services may continue to operate during the Night-Time Closure Period. Employees of these businesses may report to and from work and perform work duties as required by their employer during the Stay at Home Period.

Are workplace social events and functions, such as office holiday parties, subject to the Night-Time Public Closure Period?

Yes. Workplace events and functions that are outside of normal business operations must cease between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

If a patron refuses to leave the premises after an establishment has announced its closure, what can the establishment do?

Patrons who refuse to exit an establishment after being asking to leave may be subject to criminal trespass prosecution.

Modified Stay at Home Order

Are individuals allowed to stay at short-term vacation rentals and other temporary housing spaces, such as hotels, during the Stay at Home Period?

Yes. Individuals may stay at vacation and other temporary housing spaces and be in compliance with this Order.

If I am outside of my home during the Stay at Home Period, am I required to show proof?

No. Individuals are not required to show documentation that they fall within an exception to the Stay at Home Order.

Does the Stay at Home Order apply to homeless individuals?

No. Individuals experiencing homelessness are exempt from this Order.

If my amusement park has a dining or retail area, may I operate those indoor portions of the facility?

Yes. However, indoor rides and other indoor attractions remain closed.

I am taking a large group to an outdoor amusement park. Are we subject to the mass gathering limit?

Yes. Group activities at outdoor amusement parks are permitted, subject to the mass gathering limits.

Are bars open under this Order?

Yes, for on-site consumption in outdoor seating areas only, subject to applicable local and state regulations. Indoor bar areas must remain closed.

Are non-bar nightclubs, lounges, adult entertainment facilities, other night spots, and arenas open under this Order?

Yes, provided they can comply with the terms of the Order, including the requirement that guests remain seated. All establishments in this category may open their outdoor areas, subject to emergency occupancy limits and other requirements, and may operate indoors subject to the mass gathering limit.

Where are bars, night spots, and arenas allowed to serve alcoholic beverages?

Alcoholic beverages may be consumed only in outdoor seating areas, subject to applicable local and state regulations.

Can guests go inside the bar to order drinks?

If necessary, guests may place orders inside the establishment. However, all alcoholic beverages must be consumed in the outdoor seating area. Guests placing orders inside the establishment must wear face coverings and wait six feet apart.

My bar or nightclub does not have a designated outdoor seating area. May I use a parking lot, grassy area, or other designated space?

Establishments should check their local and state regulations to determine if and how they can expand their outdoor premises. At all times on existing or expanded outdoor premises, tables must be arranged six feet apart and the establishment must be in compliance with emergency occupancy limits.

For my bar, night spot, or arena, how many guests are allowed in the outdoor seating area?

The lesser of 100 people or 30% of the outdoor occupancy limit. For example, if a bar’s outdoor occupancy limit is 400 people, its 30% occupancy calculation would be 120 people outdoors. However, bars may only serve 100 people outdoors, per the terms of this Order, so this bar is allowed 100 Guests.

Is music and live performance allowed at my bar, night spot, or arena?

Yes. All performers must follow social distancing guidelines.

May guests be seated both indoors and outdoors at non-bar night clubs, lounges, and other night spots?

These establishments may seat up to 25 guests indoors while also having guests seated outdoors up to the maximum capacity limit. Establishments that were not seated before COVID-19 may bring in seats. Alcohol consumption is only permitted in outdoor seating areas.

May bars have pool tables, dart games, and other amenities available for their guests?

Only outdoors. Indoor bar amenities are not open under this Order.

Are movie theaters allowed to reopen?

Yes, movie theaters may reopen subject to occupancy limits and other restrictions.

Which event and entertainment facilities remain closed under this Order?

Indoor event and entertainment venues, night clubs, lounges, and other night spots where guests are not seated.

May I have an indoor wedding reception?

Yes. Venues may host wedding receptions with an occupancy limit of the lesser of 100 people or 30% of the stated fire capacity. Guests must be seated and the establishment must follow other requirements set forth in the Order. Facilities should avoid scheduling a standing reception or cocktail hour. Wedding ceremonies are not subject to the capacity and other requirements in this Order, but guests are encouraged to follow the Three Ws (Wear a face covering, Wash hands, and Wait six feet apart).

May I serve alcohol at my movie theater, meeting space, or gaming business?

Yes, if allowed under applicable local and state regulations.

At seated events and venues, may guests bounce from table to table?

No. Guests must remain seated.

Are transportation vehicles used for amusement (such as hayrides and trolleys) allowed to operate?

Yes, subject to 30% occupancy limitations and other requirements.

When must the sale or service of alcoholic beverages cease?

For any business that is open and permitted to serve alcoholic beverages for on-site consumption, the sale and service of alcoholic beverages must cease between 9 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.

Do the limits placed on spectators at entertainment and sporting events in very large outdoor facilities apply to professional and collegiate sports?

Yes. Spectators at professional and collegiate sporting events at very large outdoor facilities (defined as those facilities with a total seating capacity of 10,000 or more and which meet the other conditions in the Order) are limited to 7% of the facility’s total seating capacity.

Are alcohol sales permitted at very large outdoor facility events?

Yes, alcoholic beverages may be served for on-site consumption, subject to applicable local and state regulation. However, if a very large outdoor facility has a distinct indoor bar area (like a bar in the facility’s concourse), guests may not consume alcohol in that area.

If you have questions regarding COVID-19, we recommend that you visit the North Carolina COVID-19 Information Hub or the Centers for Disease Control website for the latest information and trends.