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STPG Covid Update

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Bars in St. Tammany May now Operate at 50% Capacity as Percent Positivity Rate Drops

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announced that effective 5 p.m. today, March 18, 2021, bars located in St. Tammany may now operate at 50% capacity as the Percent Positivity Rate in St. Tammany has moved below 5% for two consecutive weeks, according to the Louisiana Department of Health.

“St. Tammany citizens have worked hard to adhere to best prevention practices, and many who are eligible are choosing to get the vaccine. These factors are impacting our positivity rates in a good way,” said President Mike Cooper.

The specific language in Proclamation Number 29 JBE 2021 COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Phase 3 of Resilient Louisiana states: “If a bar is located in a parish that has a percent positivity of 5% or less for two consecutive weeks, as determined and published by the Louisiana Department of Health, the bar may operate at 50% capacity, not to exceed 250 people, as determined by the State Fire Marshal. Should any parish that opts in subsequently exceed 5% positivity for two consecutive weeks, bars in that parish shall return to 25% capacity.”

Find current updates at the St. Tammany Parish Government website.

Local News

Louisiana Moves to Phase 3 COVID Restrictions

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From the Louisiana Governor’s Office, March 2, 2021:

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Following almost six weeks of improvements in Louisiana’s COVID case counts and a sustained decrease in COVID-related hospitalizations, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced today that Louisiana will move forward to Phase 3.  This will bring most COVID restrictions back to where they were last September. Louisiana’s statewide mask mandate, which has been in place since last July, will remain in place. The Governor’s new order will last for 28 days and will expire March 31, 2021.

Overall, Louisiana’s percent positivity for COVID-19 tests is 5 percent, one third of the positivity rate six weeks ago. The state has completed more than 6 million COVID tests and administered more than 1 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines.

“Since we stepped back into more increased restrictions more than three months ago, the goal has been to slow the spread and avoid overwhelming our hospitals, which we have done thanks to the hard work of many Louisianans,” Gov. Edwards said. “These Phase 3 restrictions will keep some common sense and lifesaving limitations in place while we work to continue keeping the case counts down and administering the vaccines to as many Louisianans as quickly as we can.

“As we are cautiously reducing some of the restrictions related to slowing the spread of COVID, it is even more critical that people take the necessary precautions to protect themselves and those around them. This includes wearing face masks, practicing social distancing, washing their hands frequently, staying home when they are sick or have been exposed and getting the vaccine when it is their turn. The last several weeks have been full of hopeful milestones, including a third COVID vaccine and the state administering more than one million doses. But we also know that COVID variants, which we know are more contagious, are active in Louisiana. In nearly a year of battling this pandemic, we have lost almost 10,000 of our fellow Louisianans, and many people have suffered greatly. It is incumbent upon all of us to do our part to help put this pandemic behind us and save lives.”

The majority of businesses, including restaurants and salons, will be able to move to 75 percent of their capacity and indoor gatherings and event centers will be capped at 50 percent of their capacity but limited to 250 people. Religious services will no longer have capacity limits, social distancing is strongly encouraged and masking will still be required.

Gyms and fitness centers will remain at 50 percent of their capacity, based on recent research from the CDC that raises concern about the spread of COVID-19 in these settings. Bars in all parishes will be able to open for indoor service at 25 percent capacity, not to exceed 250 people, but those in parishes where the percent positivity is 5 percent or lower for two consecutive weeks may have indoor service at 50 percent capacity, not to exceed 250 people. Alcohol sales still must end at 11 p.m. and no one younger than 21 years old can enter a bar.  Patrons must be masked at all times except when consuming food or drink, and they must be served at socially distanced tables.

Live music will be allowed indoors under additional guidance provided by the State Fire Marshal. Indoor gatherings may operate at 50 percent capacity with a cap of 250 people. Outdoor events may operate at 50 percent of their capacity, with no cap on attendance, but six feet of social distancing must be practiced. Conventions, conferences, indoor sporting events and fairs and festivals may operate at up to 50 percent capacity with six feet of social distancing required, if they receive approval from the State Fire Marshal and the Louisiana Department of Health.  Strict masking continues to be required for all gatherings and events.

  • Click here to read the Governor’s new Phase 3 order.
  • Click here to review the data about COVID incidence statewide.
  • Click here to view the new Phase 3 guidance on OpenSafely.la.gov.
As of March 1st, 2021 from the Louisiana Governor Facebook page
Local News Parish News

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper Announces Bars May Re-open for On-Premises Consumption

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From St. Tammany Parish Government:

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announces that bars may reopen in St. Tammany for on-premises consumption as of today, October 7, 2020, under Phase 3 guidelines as our percent positivity rate has fallen below 5% for two consecutive weeks. According to the Louisiana Department of Health, from 9/17 – 9/23, St. Tammany Parish had a Percent Positivity Rate of  3.5 %; and for the week of  9/24 – 9/30, 4.30 %. Cooper submitted an opt-in request to the Governor’s Office Tuesday, October 6, 2020 in anticipation of the percent positivity rate in St. Tammany falling below the required threshold for bars to reopen under Governor Edwards’ Phase 3 requirements, received official approval from the Louisiana State Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control, and subsequently signed an amended Executive Order reflecting the change.

“Opening another sector of our economy is a big win for us, and for the businesses who will get to open their doors to the public again. We were set to proceed as quickly as possible to do so,” said Cooper. “As I have said since this pandemic began, my goal is to balance the health of the community with the health of our economy.”

Bars may open under the following guidelines:

  1. Bars may reopen and offer tableside service only. Standing and bar service will be prohibited.
  2. Indoor capacity shall be limited to a 25% occupancy rate or fifty (50) people, whichever is less.
  3. Outdoor capacity shall be limited to fifty (50) people and only for tableside service.
  4. Tables shall be spaced in accordance with SFM social distancing guidelines.
  5. Bars and other Class AG permit holders including daiquiri shops must cease all sale and service of alcoholic beverages and close no later than 11 P.M.
  6. No person under the age of twenty-one (21) shall be allowed on to the premises.
  7. Live music is prohibited.

See complete guidelines here.

Per Phase3 guidelines, if at any time St. Tammany Parish’s percent positivity rate subsequently exceed 10% positivity for two consecutive weeks, bars in St. Tammany Parish will then be closed for on-premises consumption, unless and until the percent positivity decreases to 5% or less for two consecutive weeks. www.stpgov.org

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Covington’s White Linen Night This Saturday Celebrates the Arts Community

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White Linen NightHistoric Downtown Covington’s second annual White Linen Night will take place on Saturday, August 15, 2015, from six to nine in the evening. The event is community-organized and paid for by the generous contributions of local business owners with the net proceeds donated to the Public Art for Covington Fund.

The Public Art for Covington Fund is a non-profit fund administered through the Northshore Community Foundation. The mission of this charitable endeavor is to place art in Covington that reflects the rich history and culture of the city, to reflect and reinforce Covington’s reputation and standing as an artist’s community.

Participating restaurants, bars and retail shops have agreed to donate ten percent of their sales for the night to the fund or have donated a fee towards covering the costs of decorations and publicity for the event. Some highlights of the event include: live projection art projects around town, including an interactive light painting and a projection and musical piece honoring the work of Walker Percy in the Southern Hotel’s courtyard; the inaugural Trailhead Art Market; a featured Pimms Cup cocktails at participating bars and restaurants; live music in the streets.
See more at the White Linen Night Facebook page.

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Block Party Returns This Friday – Live Music at Local Venues

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Friday Night Block PartyWith the return of Spring, Covington’s Block Parties are back! The St. John’s Historic District features many fantastic restaurants, watering holes and great shopping at local retail stores. The cars line Columbia Street and music fills the air as downtown comes alive on the last Friday of the month March through October. Streets are closed along Columbia and Boston streets during the block party, from 6:30 – 9:30 pm.

Surf n Turf CS Rock N BluesColumbia St. Rock N Blues cooks up a surf and turf special on Fridays from 4 – 9 pm only, featuring filet and lobster – yum! Rock N Blues will have the Bass Wagon outside with 80’s music inside, and DJ Hollywood gets going after the block party ends.  407 N Columbia Street

Electric Cornbread at The Green RoomThe Green Room presents Street Parade from 6 -9 p.m., then Electric Cornbread takes the stage at 10. Street Parade does classic rock while Electric Cornbread is folky rock.  521 E Boston Street

Four UnpluggledColumbia Street Tap Room hosts Rick Samson on the patio during the block party, and Four Unplugged begin at 9 p.m. to keep the party going.  434 N Columbia Street

Stoop Kids WT - CopyWinos & Tacos will feature the Stoop Kids, a blend of hip-hop, doo-wop, surf rock, jazz, and everything in between, playing on the back patio starting at 8 pm!  321 N Columbia Street

Local Events

Friday Block Party In Downtown Covington This Weekend

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Friday Night Block PartyVintage car enthusiasts will once again stroll along Columbia and Boston Streets perusing the vast auto collection, each exhibited by their personal owners in downtown Covington. This free public event will be held, weather permitting, Friday from 6:30 – 9:30 p.m., hosted by the City of Covington. Afterwards, explore Covington’s bars and music venues for more celebratory events and drink specials!

For more info visit www.covla.com

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Other Happenings Downtown for Second Saturday

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Downtown Covington has plenty to offer in addition to the gallery openings on second Saturday.  Mac’s On Boston, Del Porto, Buster’s Place, Vazquez Restaurant and St. John’s Coffeehouse are all right along Boston Street, serving lunch and dinner, and you can find the best local music and drink specials at the Green Room.  Columbia Street has Wino’s & Tacos, Columbia Street Rock N Blues and Columbia Street Tap Room, all featuring live music on the weekend and great food all the time.  Covington’s Cultural Arts District is getting into full swing as fall approaches!