On February 24, 2021, the Governor amended Executive Order Seventy-Two with the next steps of the “Forward Virginia” plan to safely and gradually ease public health restrictions while mitigating the spread of the virus.
The Commonwealth will maintain a Safer at Home strategy with continued strict health and safety protocols including physical distancing, mask-wearing requirements, gathering limits, and business capacity restrictions.
The following mitigation measures were put into place as of Monday, March 1, 2021:
- Social gatherings: The maximum number of individuals permitted in a social gathering will increase from 10 to 25 people for outdoor settings while remaining at 10 persons for indoor settings.
- Entertainment venues: Outdoor entertainment and public amusement venues will be able to operate with up to 1,000 individuals or at 30 percent capacity, whichever is lower. If current trends continue, these venues may be able to operate at 30 percent capacity with no cap on the number of people permitted to attend starting in April. Indoor entertainment and public amusement venues must continue to operate at 30 percent capacity with a cap of 250 people. All entertainment venues were previously limited to a maximum of 250 individuals.
- Dining establishments: The on-site sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol will be permitted until midnight, extended from 10:00 p.m. All restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, and tasting rooms still must be closed between midnight and 5:00 a.m.
- Universal mask requirement: All Virginians aged five and over are required to wear face coverings in indoor settings shared with others (excluding personal residences) and when outdoors within six feet of another person. This order expands the current statewide mask mandate, which has been in place since May 29 and requires all individuals aged five and over to wear face coverings in indoor and outdoor public settings outside of their own household. These changes are consistent with new CDC guidelines, which recommend the universal wearing of face coverings.
See the full text of Executive Order Seventy-Two, which incorporates earlier Executive Orders Sixty-Three and Sixty-Seven.
Support Our Local Businesses
Arlington County will continue to support businesses throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We encourage Arlingtonians to continue to support our local businesses and use carryout at their favorite restaurants.
Arlington Economic Development has also compiled resources on its COVID-19 Business Support page.
As we approach the holiday season, remember that the safest way to celebrate this year is with people in your household bubble. If you do plan to spend time with people outside your household, follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to make your celebration safer.
More information is available on the County’s COVID website, including:
Updated February 26, 2021