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Wilmington Leaders Allow Shops to Re-Open, Loosen Restrictions on Carry-Out Orders

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Most stores can reopen, as long as shops adhere to and enforce social-distancing requirements. In addition, food establishments may now open their doors to customers who are picking up carry-out orders.

While New Hanover County’s stay-at-home order expires Wednesday, Apr. 29, Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo has signed his own five-day-long proclamation in its place. Many of the restrictions are the same -- but a few have been lifted within city limits. 

The biggest changes in Wilmington’s declaration pertain to retail. Most stores can reopen, as long as shops adhere to and enforce social-distancing requirements. In addition, food establishments may now open their doors to customers who are picking up carry-out orders.

As for what isn’t changing? Mass gathering restrictions still apply, and places of amusement -- like playgrounds, museums, concert halls, movie theaters and recreation centers -- are to remain closed. Hotels and short-term rentals for non-essential stays are also still prohibited.

Mayor Bill Saffo: 

“These decisions were not made in an arbitrary manner. They were made in consultation with both the medical community and the business community.”

The city order is in effect through Monday, May 4. On Tuesday, May 5, city council members will consider extending it. The mayors of Wrightsville, Carolina and Kure Beach have also announced that their current restrictions -- along with the statewide stay-at-home order -- will remain in effect through Friday, May 8. 

Read Mayor Saffo's full, official proclamation here.