Health Order to Limit Mass Gatherings Signed

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced that Ohio Department of Health Interim Director Lance Himes signed a revised health order to limit mass gatherings in Ohio.

Widespread non-compliance with existing gathering order blamed for sharp rise in COVID spread.

“Despite the health order that limited mass gatherings to 10 people that was signed in April remaining in effect, we have seen rampant spread of the virus as a result of banquets, wedding receptions, and social gatherings following funerals,” said Governor DeWine.  “We have seen great tragedy associated with such events.  It’s not the ceremonies causing the problem.  It’s the party afterward.”

In order to minimize the spread of COVID-19 through airborne particles passing between people in close contact, wedding receptions, funeral repasts, and other events at banquet facilities are subject to the following restrictions:

  • No socializing or activities in open congregate areas and no dancing.
  • Guests must be seated at all times. Traditional wedding reception events such as first dance, toasts, tossing the bouquet and cutting the cake are permitted.
  • If serving food and beverages, guests must be served at their seats. No self-serve buffets and no self-serve bar areas permitted.
  • Masks must be worn at all times unless actively consuming food or beverages.
  • No more than 10 people should be seated at a table and those individuals must be from the same household.

This order does not apply to religious observances; First Amendment protected speech, including petition or referendum circulators, and any activity by media; and to governmental meetings which include meetings that are required to be open to the public.

This order goes into effect November 17, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.

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