As of Dec. 11, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has the state in Phase 3 of his three-phased approach to reopen for business, with a couple modifications. The first is a reduction of indoor gathering sizes from 25 to 10 people. The second is a stay-at-home order from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily, unless an exception applies.

The stay-at-home mandate will remain in effect until at least Jan. 8, 2021. Many businesses must close at 10 p.m. because of this order. Furthermore, on-premise alcohol consumption sales are prohibited from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. at restaurants and bars.

Meanwhile, Gov. Cooper's face covering mandate, instituted in late June 2020, remains in effect. Face coverings are required in public for everybody over the age of 5, unless a medical exception applies.

In Edenton, we strongly encourage everybody -- locals and visitors -- to practice the Three W's (see graphic at top of page). Those three W’s are: (1) WEAR a cloth face covering; (2) WAIT six feet apart to maintain social distance; and (3) WASH hands often for at least 20 seconds (or use sanitizer).

Here are the key protocols for Phase 3 in NC:

  • Face coverings are still mandatory for everybody over the age of 5
  • Limits on gatherings are now 10 people indoors, but remain at 50 people outdoors
  • Smaller outdoor entertainment venues may operate at 30% outdoor capacity or 100 guests, whichever is less
  • Movie theaters and conference centers may open indoor spaces to 30% capacity or 100 seated guests, whichever is less
  • Museums and aquariums may remain open at 50 percent capacity
  • Bars may operate outdoors only at 30% outdoor capacity or 100 guests, whichever is less
  • Bowling alleys, gyms, skating rinks and indoor exercise facilities may open at 30% capacity
  • 9 p.m. curfew on alcohol sales for on-site consumption is in effect for restaurants and bars

There are a few exceptions to Gov. Cooper's face covering mandate:

  • Masks are not required for people in the same household 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

Like other NC destinations, we ask visitors to practice safe measures in public spaces. Please note, the visitor experience can differ from place to place. Each attraction and business has 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.

If you are not yet comfortable returning to travel, feel free to use this website as a guide for planning future trips to Edenton/Chowan County, NC.

For the latest COVID-19 updates from the NC Dept. of Health and Human Services, click here

The Town of Edenton website

Chowan County website


Check back regularly for new and updated information.