Gov. Pete Ricketts expounded on state and federal guidelines Wednesday, and stressed from March 16-31, it is critical that social gatherings be limited to 10 or less people.

Scheduled events will need to be modified, cancelled, or postponed, he said.

If the event can be modified, consider:

  • Televising the event
  • Teleconferences/videoconferences
  • Postponing to a later date.

This guidance applies to all previously planned social gatherings including church services, funerals, weddings, parades, and festivals, Ricketts said.

Also:

The 10-person guidance applies to gyms and theaters. Such establishments should use common sense when following the guideline.

The purpose is to socially distance people (spacing them more than 6 feet apart) and to avoid congregating them in enclosed spaces.

Childcare centers should also work to follow the 10-person guidance. Again, these establishments should use common sense when applying the guideline with the goal of reducing class sizes and increasing space between children.

Retailers like pharmacies, grocery stores, and home improvement stores are not expected to limit their establishments to 10 people or less. Generally, customers of these businesses are not in close proximity to one another. Again, retailers should use common sense to set up queues that keep customers spread out as much as possible.

Restaurants and bars must limit to 10 people and are strongly encouraged to move to drive-thru / takeout only through the end of March. These establishments should practice social distancing — seating customers apart from one another — whenever possible.

Ricketts said restaurants should watch closely for updates.

In a related development, Pals Brewing of North Platte announced Wednesday it is closing the dining area of the taproom and offering take-out food and beer.

Several North Platte restaurants are considering making deliveries.