Tennessee issues new guidelines for concert venues, fairs and fireworks displays

Tennessee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL)- Tennessee’s Economic Recovery Group has issued new updated guidelines for attractions, large venues and community events in 89 of 95 counties.

Under the ‘recommended attraction closures/modifications’ tab on the state’s website, it listed guidance for places like fairs, zoos, and even fireworks displays.

Six counties – Shelby, Madison, Davidson, Hamilton, Knox and Sullivan – may continue to follow individual, county-specific reopening plans created in consultation with state and local health departments.

“Thanks to the continued hard work of Tennesseans and business owners operating responsibly, we’re able to further reopen our state’s economy,” Gov. Bill Lee said. “These new guidelines provide useful information so that we can enjoy the events that connect us to our neighbors and communities, and allow businesses to operate in a way that protects the wellbeing of their customers and employees.”

Updated guidelines for close contact services, exercise facilities and recreation activities now focus on social distancing measures rather than strict capacity limits. In addition, the guidelines for close contact businesses also provide guidance for resuming certain services that require the removal of face-coverings.

You can read the specific guidance below.

  • Singing/Live Music – Research and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that activities like singing or using a projected voice may project respiratory droplets in greater quantity and over greater distance, increasing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, particularly with prolonged exposure. Maintain at least 15 feet of separation—and more if possible— between audience members and performers such as vocalists and singers. Adopt seating and spacing modifications to increase physical distance from a performer. Where necessary, install barriers to minimize travel of aerosolized particles from performers, or implement alternative placement of performers. In addition, maximize physical spacing between performers on-stage. When possible, utilize outdoor areas for performances to increase ventilation.

  • “Pop-up”, roving, or street performances – Events that may gather crowds of onlookers outside of controlled seated areas should be avoided in order to maintain appropriate social distancing

  • Photography areas – Guests should only utilize if social distancing is possible

  • Playground – Avoid opening playgrounds and high-contact water play areas (e.g., splashpads) until advisable

  • Interactive touch displays – For now, do not utilize interactive exhibits where visitors touch display items or controls that cannot be easily sanitized (e.g., fabrics, tightly enclosed spaces) or sanitized between use by different persons

  • Amusement parks and midways
    • Consult manufacturer’s specifications regarding resuming operation of amusement devices and rides after extended closure
    • If contracting with a mobile amusement and/or concessions operator, verify their sanitation protocols and other COVID-19 precautions
    • Work with operators and contractors to space out rides and booths, in consideration of social distancing recommendations and management of customer queues/lines. Limit mixing non-household or acquaintance groups on a ride unless appropriate physical distancing can be maintained

  • Performing arts and concert venues, theaters, and auditoriums
    • Follow guidelines for sanitizing multi-use equipment like microphones
    • Modify seating by blocking off seats or rows within a section to accommodate social distancing of at least 6 feet between individuals from different households or groups
    • Limit physical contact between ushers and guests. Ushers should wear face coverings
    • Maintain CDC-recommended distancing between performers and audience, particularly for vocal or other performances involving projected voices. Eliminate any performances or components in which performers go into the audience or audience members are encouraged to come on-stage

  • Zoos and aquariums
    • Avoid offering interactive experiences like animal encounters until advisable
    • Establish reduced capacity limits for, or do not open, indoor exhibits until advisable

  • Museums and historic sites
    • Use designated visitor traffic patterns where possible
    • Establish queuing distances and maximum grouping sizes throughout
    • If the venue utilizes docents, promote social distancing guidelines and limit physical contact between docents and guests. Docents should wear face coverings

  • Livestock Competitions and Events
    • Adjust entry submission protocols and judging procedures to minimize close contact between persons
    • Refer to the Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s Guidance for Live Shows and Events

  • Events with Vendors and Booths (fairs, festivals, trade shows, etc.)
    • Increase separation between booths and exhibits.  Limit the number of persons inside a booth at any one time and require social distancing in lines that form for a vendor booth, concession vendor or food truck
    • Use signs and staffing to direct the flow of persons through high-traffic areas in a manner that results in one-directional “lanes”
    • Properly sanitize and distance porta-potties, if used. Provide hand sanitizer or hand washing stations with running water and soap for each porta-potty. Space out porta-potty clusters to create greater social distancing within lines; consider decreasing the ratio of the number of persons per porta-potty. Work with vendor or volunteers to maintain hygiene supplies and to regularly sanitize porta-potties (wearing appropriate PPE) throughout event.
    • Encourage customers to only touch items they intend to purchase
    • Sanitize shared resources (e.g., items involved in carnival games) after each use
    • Require vendors to follow CDC or the venue’s COVID-19 precautions
    • Evaluate whether perimeter fencing or other access precautions are necessary for safely managing attendee capacity and ingress/egress traffic flow due to CDC social distancing recommendations
    • Consider coordinating with local health department or other healthcare providers to offer COVID-19-related public health resources (e.g., on-site COVID-19 testing opportunities)
    • Consider making available to attendees cloth face coverings either for sale or at no-cost (e.g., could offer masks or, as supplies are available, personal-size hand sanitizer with event logo or brand)

  • Parades
    • Modify the parade in order to reduce density of persons (e.g., extend parade route, encourage spacing between household or acquaintance groups along parade route, offer livestream or virtual participation, or limit the number of attendees if possible)
    • Limit the number of persons on a float
    • Prohibit parade participants from distributing items to attendees
    • Utilize streets with adequate room to maintain separation between parade participants and attendees

  • Fireworks displays
    • Encourage “drive-in” participation or other modifications to promote social distancing and minimize larger crowds

You can read the full guidelines on the state’s website HERE.

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