What to know about increased capacity limits, public gatherings in Nevada amid COVID-19

Public gatherings and some capacity limits are allowed to increase under the state’s updated COVID-19 mitigation measures. 

The following guidelines are effective as of March 15 for all Washoe County residents and businesses. However, wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing measures remain in effect. 

Public gatherings and events may now operate at 50% of their fire code capacity or at 250 individuals, whichever is less. They must also follow strict social distancing requirements. 

Large public gatherings are open for submission and approval. If an organizer wants to host a large gathering or event, including conferences, conventions and trade shows, with more than 250 people they may now have up to 50% capacity, according to the new guidelines. However, they must complete and submit a form to the Department of Business and Industry (B&I). 

COVID restrictions:Nevada easing convention restrictions, allowing 50 percent capacity with approval

The following businesses may now operate at 50% capacity:

  • Libraries, museums, art galleries, aquariums and zoos
  • Retail stores and indoor malls
  • Medicinal and recreational cannabis establishments
  • Community/recreational centers (including public pools)
  • Food and beverage establishments: restaurants, bars, pubs, wineries distilleries and breweries (those that serve food and those that do not)
  • Places of worship
  • Gyms, fitness studios, yoga studios, dance studios, martial arts studios and similar establishments
  • Gaming floors
  • Arcades, racetracks, bowling alleys, mini-golf, pool halls/billiards rooms, amusement and theme parks and similar activities

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The following businesses may operate under strict social distancing requirements and protocols established by existing guidelines:

  • Spas, massage therapy and massage establishments
  • Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons and businesses that provide aesthetic skin services
  • Body art and piercing establishments

Youth and recreational adult sports are allowed to hold tournaments if a Preparedness & Safety Plan is approved by applicable state authorities. 

Adult entertainment establishments, dayclubs, nightclubs, brothels and karaoke will remain closed through May 1.  

Kristin Oh is a public safety reporter for the Reno Gazette Journal. She can be reached at koh@rgj.com or at 775-420-1285.  Please help support her work by subscribing