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State releases updated COVID-19 guidance for private gatherings 

State health says gatherings of 250 people or more should be rescheduled, canceled

—The California Public Health Department released updated guidance for private gatherings.

The guidance outlines rules for private gatherings that bring together people from different households at the same time in a single space or place. It focuses on attendance, location, behaviors, singing, chanting, shouting and live music.

Anyone planning to host or participate in a private gathering must comply with the following requirements:

1. Keep it outside.
2. Keep it small (no more than three households present at one time).
3. Don’t attend if you feel sick or are in a high-risk group.
4. Practice physical distancing and hand hygiene.
5. Wear a face covering to keep COVID-19 from spreading.
6. Keep it brief.

“Many of the most recent cases of COVID-19 in SLO County have been traced to holiday celebrations, family parties, and other social gatherings,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein, the County Health Officer. “The safest way to gather is to spend time with people in the same household or to gather virtually, but if you choose to host or attend a social gathering, please be sure to follow the rules laid out by state health officials.”

This state guidance provides an updated plan for Californians to gather outside their household and replaces the March 16, 2020 and prior gatherings guidance. It applies to private gatherings, and all other gatherings not covered by existing sector guidance are prohibited.

Gatherings are defined as social situations that bring together people from different households at the same time in a single space or place. The risk of COVID-19 transmission increases when people from different households mix.

The state’s updated guidance and other guidelines can be found online at

For updates on COVID-19 in SLO County, visit or call the recorded Public Health Information Line at (805) 788-2903. A staffed phone assistance center at (805) 543-2444 is available Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist with COVID-19 questions.

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News staff of the A-Town Daily News wrote and edited this article from local contributors and press releases. Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Connect with him on , Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog. He can be reached at

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