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Community Events and Gatherings

New York State announced gatherings of up to 25 people are allowed in regions that have entered Phase Three of re-opening, which includes Dutchess County. Gatherings up to 50 people will be permitted in Phase Four, according to the State. For the latest news and updates, visit the New York State Coronavirus website.

This page contains information to consider to minimize the spread of Coronavirus/COVID-19 at social and community gatherings.

Safety Updates

For the safety of everyone and to stop the spread of COVID-19, any individual in public who cannot maintain social distancing is now required by the State to wear a face covering. This includes riders and drivers on Dutchess County Public Transit buses. This change goes into effect Friday, April 17. Share our flyer on how to make a simple cloth face covering, but please remember, masks are NOT a substitute for social distancing. Download our Using a Cloth Face Covering as a Mask Flyer (.pdf) that includes instructions on how to make a no-sew cloth mask.

Help keep our Parks open and safe for all - download a Social Distancing at Dutchess County Parks flyer (.pdf)

Guidance from the State on protecting yourself when enjoying the outdoors.

Even smaller gatherings (groups of 20 individuals or less) should consider several factors before moving forward with an event:

  • Who are your attendees? Are they at greater risk for serious COVID-19 infection due to age or underlying medical condition?
    • Older adults and persons with underlying health conditions are considered at increased risk for severe illness and complications from COVID-19.
  • What is the nature of the environment? (seated, standing room, indoors, outdoors, style of venue)
    • Consider the type of interaction attendees and staff will have with each other
    • Having a group of people in a poorly vented indoor space presents a much greater risk than an outdoor space with the same number of people. 
  • What facilities are available to event staff and participants?
    • Consider the number of restrooms, sanitizer stations and locations for hand washing.
  • How long will the event take place? Is it a single day or will it last over the course of days or weeks? 
    • If the event lasts longer than the COVID-19 incubation period (approximately 14 days), most cases would be expected to occur while the event is underway. If the event is shorter, cases would likely occur when people return from the event to their communities and homes.
  • Will participants be screened upon arrival? Do you have an area to separate those who become sick during your event from those who are well?
    • Sick employees should be sent home immediately if possible. If attendees fall ill, they should be removed from the rest of the event and told to contact their doctor. 

Additional guidance from New York State (.pdf)


View our Permissible Activities webpage for additional guidance.

Checklist for Community and Faith Leaders

Community and faith-based organizations are encouraged to take action if and when there is a Coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak in their communities. View additional guidance from the CDC.

Use this checklist to protect the health of those you serve and staff in your care: 

  • Stay informed about local COVID-19 information and updates.
  • Put your emergency operations and communication plans into action.
  • Communicate with your community members if events and services are changed, postponed, or cancelled.
  • Emphasize everyday preventive actions through intensified communications with employees and visitors to your organization including staying home when sick, cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of your elbow, wash hands often, limit close contact with others as much as possible (about 6 feet).
  • During an event, if someone becomes sick separate them into an isolated room and ask them to leave as soon as possible.

New York State Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfection for COVID-19 For Houses of Worship (.pdf)