reopening connecticut

Here's What's Open as CT Begins Phase 2

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Phase 2 of the reopening of Connecticut began yesterday and more businesses that had to close because of the COVID-19 pandemic are able to reopen.

Capacity will be limited to 50 percent for most businesses and people heading out to those businesses will need to bring a face mask or face covering.

Gov. Ned Lamont said about 95 percent of the state’s economy will be able to be up and running after the start of Phase 2.

Governor Lamont provided a preview on Tuesday ahead of the state's phase 2 reopening.

Here is more on what to expect for Phase 2 in Connecticut.

This Is What Can Open During Phase 2:

Businesses that are allowed to reopen in Phase 2 include:

  • Amusement parks
  • Hotels and lodging
  • Indoor dining
  • Indoor museums, zoos and aquariums
  • Indoor recreation, including bowling, movie theaters
  • Libraries
  • Outdoor arts and entertainment events
  • Personal services, including nail salons, tattoo parlors
  • Restaurants for outdoor and indoor dining, but no bar areas
  • Social Clubs
  • Sports and fitness facilities, including gyms, fitness centers, pools

Amusement Parks:

  • Outdoor amusement parks can open at up to 25 percent capacity
  • Parking will be in every other spot to allow for social distancing during peak parking times
  • Physical barriers will be at ticket areas, where possible
  • Ticket purchases will be online when possible
  • Markers should be place on the ground 10 feet apart to encourage people buying tickets to social distance
  • Markings will guide patrons to a one-way flow, when possible.
  • Water fountains will be restricted to water bottle filling stations only.
  • All self-serve stations and reusable and/or refillable cup programs will be shut off
  • Lines for rides will be in a "maze style" to keep people from having to pass others within six feet when possible.
  • Rides and attractions will have empty rows and guests should be separated to safe distances
  • Get more details here.

Bowling Alleys and Movie Theaters:

  • Reservations will be required where possible
  • Indoor waiting areas will be closed
  • Partitions will be set up between employees or between employees and customers if a distance of six feet is not possible
  • All self-serve items will be removed
  • Customers should only use one piece of equipment, like one bowling ball and equipment should be cleaned between use by customers
Governor Lamont announced Friday that phase 2 of the state's reopening would now take place on June 17

Hotels and Lodging:

  • Hotels and lodging are open to guests with reservations
  • Hand sanitizer will be at entrances and in common areas
  • Employees are not allowed to enter guest rooms while a guest is there
  • Room service deliveries should be bagged and left at the door and food should be on disposable dishes and served with disposable cutlery
  • Meeting and convention spaces will be limited to current indoor social guidelines
  • Pools and gyms must follow the same rules that fitness and athletic facilities have to follow
  • Social distancing will be encouraged in elevators
  • Shields will be placed at the front desk if it's not possible to stay six feet apart
  • Contactless payment and mobile check-in and check-out with digital receipts shoud be available
  • Disposable items will be provided where possible, including plastic cups, single-use shampoo/conditioner, tissues
  • Linens will be stored in closed cabinets
  • Get more information here
Today is the beginning of Phase 2 of reopening Connecticut and Whaler's Inn is Mystic is preparing to open.

Indoor Dining:

  • The maximum indoor capacity will be 50 percent
  • Outdoor dining is still encouraged
  • Businesses are encouraged to use no-touch or disposable menus. If no disposable options are available, menus have to be sanitized between uses
  • Buffets and self-service stations must be closed
  • Condiment packets or containers should be single-use
  • Hand sanitizer should be made available at the entrance
  • Indoor waiting areas must be closed
  • Tables must be spaced at least six feet apart
  • Contactless payment is encouraged
  • Bar seating is permitted as long as there are no active work areas or working staff behind the bar or there is a physical barrier separating customers from the bar space
  • No standing customer service will be allowed and parties at the bar must be spaced six feet apart
  • Plexiglas should be placed at "key" points of customer interaction, where possible
  • Pick-up or payment locations will be at least six feet from customers waiting in line
  • Learn more here
Restaurants in Connecticut will soon be allowed to operate indoor dining with capacity limits and other health restrictions.


  • Libraries will be able to open up to 50 percent capacity
  • Libraries are encouraged to waive fines and extend due dates to discourage patrons from going to the library in person
  • They are also encouraged to limit in-person services, such as the reference desk
  • Patrons might be encouraged to use book drops instead of going to the desk
  • Social distancing must be maintained in aisles and between book stacks
  • Physical barriers should be installed around the circulation desk
  • Every other computer terminal should be blocked off
  • Libraries have been encouraged to have separate entrances and exits to allow for one-way traffic
  • Read more here

Museums, Zoos and Aquariums:

  • Museums, zoos and aquariums can open outdoor and indoor exhibits at 50 percent capacity
  • One-way floor markings will be posted when possible
  • Social distancing markers will be posted
  • Use of cash and paper receipts will be limited
  • Timed tickets or reservations should be offered to stagger visits
  • Only the interactive exhibits subject to thorough, routine cleaning can open
  • Physical barriers should be set up for ticket counters when possible
  • Performances are only allowed outside
  • Tours to be limited to allow for social distancing
  • Face masks are required during tours
  • No audio guides are allowed during phase 2
  • Learn more here
Mystic Aquarium will be reopening to the general public on May 22 but limiting visitors to outside spaces.

Download the NBC Connecticut App for the latest on the coronavirus pandemic, including live news conferences, a town by town breakdown of the latest cases in our state and push alerts with breaking news updates

Outdoor Events:

  • Contactless ticketing should be offered where possible
  • Hand sanitizer at entrance points and common areas where possible
  • Learn more here

Personal Services:

  • The following guidelines are in place for services, including day spa, electrology, estheticians, floating, piercing, spa, tanning, tattoo, waxing, massage therapy, nail technicians and eye lash technicians
  • They will open at 50 percent capacity
  • Personal services that require a customer to remove a mask cannot be performed in Phase 2
  • Employees should not share equipment if possible, shared equipment has to be cleaned between uses
  • Appointments must be pre-scheduled to ensure there is no overlap between customers. Appointments shall be 1:1 only
  • Workstations should be six feet apart
  • Front desks should have Plexiglas or another similar barrier
  • Waiting rooms, high-traffic areas, lobbies, relaxation lounges must be closed
  • Anyone handling laundry should wear a mask, gloves, eye protection and a protective cover over clothes
  • Towels and other laundered items must be properly cleaned and stored. If not done on the premises, a commercial linen service can be used
  • Every other or every third locker should be blocked to enforce social distancing
  • Procedure area cleaning sanitizer should have medical/hospital/surgical grade disinfectant
  • Read more here
Phase 2 of Connecticut's reopening includes indoor dining for restaurants and nail salons.

Gyms, Fitness Centers and Pools:

  • Sports, sports clubs and complexes, gyms, fitness centers and pools can open in Phase 2.
  • Each outdoor sporting event field will be limited to two teams, officials and limited family members
  • Indoor sporting events will be limited to 50 percent of building capacity of 25 people, whichever is smaller, per field, court, pool, rink
  • For indoor sporting events, capacity limits can be exceeded, but only to include one parent/guardian per athlete
  • Gyms, sports clubs and fitness centers that do not provide organized sports can operate at 50 percent capacity
  • Establishments that require customers to wear a mask while exercising must maintain six feet of space between equipment.
  • Establishments that do not require customers to wear a mask while exercising must maintain 12 feet of space between equipment
  • Touchless appliances should be available wherever possible, including for payment, paper towels, soap dispensers and trash cans
  • Athletes, coaches and customers are required to bring their own water bottles
  • Equipment should be cleaned frequently and customers must wipe down equipment after each use
  • Every other or every third locker should be blocked to enforce social distancing
  • Common areas where customers or employees may congregate should be closed, including break rooms, check-in counters other than touchless
  • Concession stands are allowed to open, but must follow sector rules for restaurants. Sales of prepackaged food and drink do not have to follow the same rules for restaurants
  • Tanning beds should be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized between each use
  • Customers should schedule participation in a group fitness class in advance
  • Group classes should be held outdoors or virtually when possible and maintain six feet of distance at all times
  • Indoor group classes should only be held at 50 percent while maintaining six feet of distance while wearing a mask and 12 feet if not wearing a mask
  • People who are going swimming should arrive in a swimsuit and have showered before arriving
  • No personal or facial items, including goggles, nose clips, snorkels or caps should be shared.
  • Learn more here
As states across the U.S. lift coronavirus lockdowns, gyms are starting to reopen their doors - within limits. We talked to David Thomas, Director of Infectious Diseases for Johns Hopkins Medicine, and Natalie Bushaw, spokeswoman for Lifetime Fitness, to find out how safe you should feel at the gym.


Face masks should be worn in public and businesses are required to carry out strict cleaning and disinfection protocols.

Get more specific information about the rules and guidelines here.

Businesses are not required to open if they are not ready, but those that do must follow rules and guidelines that are in place.

Reporting Violations:

  • Signs should be posted that include the state hotline -- 211 -- for employees and customers to report potential violations of rules.
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