On Monday, Gov.John Carney signed the eighth revision to the Covid-19 emergency order, increasing outdoor gathering limits and easing capacity restrictions in outdoor venues effective at 8 a.m. on April 1.
The eighth revision was outlined as follows:
- Outdoor gatherings in spaces with no fire occupancy restrictions are limited to 150 people or higher with a plan approved by the Division of Public Health (DPH).
This includes, but is not limited to, outdoor weddings, funerals, concerts, parades, festivals, conventions, fundraisers, sporting events, and fairs. Gathering restrictions apply in outdoor spaces that do not have a stated fire capacity.
- Outdoor venues with fire occupancy restrictions and more than 100,000 square feet of public space must limit occupancy to 50 percent of stated fire capacity. Any outdoor venue hosting more than 150 people must still have a plan approved by DPH to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
- Outdoor venues with fire occupancy restrictions and with less than 100,000 square feet of public space must limit occupancy to 75 percent of stated fire capacity. Any outdoor venue hosting more than 150 people must still have a plan approved by DPH to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
- The revision also removes the two-spectator limit for sporting events. The change allows the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control to issue an additional 1,000 surf fishing vehicle tags for the 2021 season.
- Indoor gatherings or events at any business or indoor space open to the public remain limited to the lesser of fifty percent of stated fire occupancy or twenty-five people.
- Food and drink establishments remain at fifty percent of stated fire occupancy requirements, excluding employees.
Plans for outdoor events and gatherings should be submitted to DPH by emailing HSPContact@delaware.gov at least seven days before the event.
The change came as the Firefly Music Festival in Dover announced it will return in late September. The event is typically held in June.
“We know that gathering outdoors poses a lower risk of COVID-19 infection and transmission,” said Carney. “That’s why we’re comfortable easing certain outdoor restrictions as we head into spring. But until we can get enough Delawareans fully vaccinated, keep following the basic, common-sense public health precautions. Wear a mask when you’re around others. Avoid large gatherings when possible. Get the Covid-19 vaccine when your number is called. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Stay vigilant.”
Hosts of outdoor gatherings and events must provide materials and equipment necessary for proper hand hygiene and require attendees to follow masking and social distancing requirements – including having a mechanism for limiting attendance, according to the order.