Updates on the Coronavirus and Travel to Sonoma County, CA

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Updated August 31, 2020.

The new state directive creating the Blueprint framework replaces a July 13 State Order that had placed Sonoma County on the state monitoring list and prohibited activities such as indoor operations at restaurants, gyms and museums. Those restrictions will remain in place with the exception of barber shops, hair salons and malls, which will be allowed to reopen under detailed modifications to limit the spread of the virus. For example, malls will not be allowed to open food courts or common areas and must limit capacity to 25 percent of normal operations. Please visit covid19.ca.gov to track where Sonoma County and other counties stand and what activities are allowed.

Starting August 6, Sonoma County will issue fines to individuals and business operators who refuse to follow pandemic safety orders and measures designed to slow or stop the spread of the coronavirus. The enforcement ordinance approved by the Board of Supervisors allows for individuals to be cited and fined $100 for non-commercial violations and up to $10,000 for businesses. Violations include failing to wear facial coverings, not practicing safe social distancing (maintaining 6-foot separations from non-family members) when in public or taking part in gatherings of more than 12 people who aren’t sheltering in the same household.  Sonoma County’s new ordinance, effective immediately, is similar to those adopted in neighboring counties Marin, Napa, Mendocino and Yolo counties, and comes amid a statewide surge in COVID-19 transmission.

The following business types are operating with just outside service:

  • Restaurants
  • Wineries/tasting rooms
  • Bars, Clubs, breweries, brewpubs and distilleries
  • Movie theaters
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Card rooms

The state order permits affected businesses to offer limited outside services:

  • Outdoor dining and take-out service.
  • Wineries and tasting rooms may operate outdoors without being required to serve food.
  • Bars, clubs, breweries, brewpubs and distilleries may serve alcohol outdoors, but only in the same transaction as a meal.

Sonoma County Tourism is encouraging everyone to follow public health authorities’ recommendations  and to review the Safe Travels Promise as a way to keep our community and visitors safe.

Basic Sonoma County Safety Measures

  • Masks required in public – YES
  • Physical distancing required in public – YES
  • Call ahead to confirm business service levels and safety protocols – YES

Safe Travels in Sonoma County

Sonoma County Tourism joins with our health department, and all County officials in ensuring all persons who are in public places wear a facial covering.  Please note each one in the video has a mask readily available should they come in contact with another person.  We take the health and wellbeing of our local residents, employees and visitors very seriously and why we instituted the Safe Travels Promise.  

Accommodations:

Since June 19, leisure travel is once again permitted in Sonoma County. Some lodging businesses remain closed. Please contact lodging businesses, in advance, to determine their availability.

Wineries/Breweries/Distilleries:

Wineries and Breweries are open for outdoor service without being required to serve food at the same time.  Bars, clubs, breweries, brewpubs and distilleries may serve alcohol outdoors, only in conjunction with a meal. Reservations are encouraged.

Restaurants: 

Restaurants are open for outdoor dining as well as offering take out and/or delivery services. We encourage visitors to contact the business you would like to visit, in advance, to determine their level of service. See restaurant and dining trip ideas.

Shopping:

Walk-in customers are allowed for walk-in shopping, within certain parameters, however curbside pickup, delivery, and shipping are encouraged.  To support local businesses see here for ideas.

Attractions:

Movie theaters, family entertainment centers, museums and card rooms are closed under the state health order from July 13, 2020. Please contact any attraction you are interested in visiting, in advance to confirm.

Parks and Recreation:

Inland and coastal parks are open. Beach visitors can enjoy active recreation, as well as sunbathing and relaxing. Barbecues, picnic areas, campgrounds and other park facilities that encourage gatherings are closed. Recreational campgrounds are open as long as campers comply with social distancing and hygiene requirements. Please check with the campground if the facility is open. The health order also allows barbecues and picnic areas to be used by an individual or a household group.

Sonoma County Regional Parks campgrounds reopened July 1.

Activities that are indoors, or outdoors but involve high-touch equipment, or that encourage group gatherings are generally not allowed including spas, playgrounds and spectator sports.

In compliance with social distancing restrictions, the following park facilities are open: tennis courts, disc golf courses, basketball courts, pickleball courts and other shared sports facilities. Use is limited to a single individual, members of the same household or organized groups, leagues, camps or childcare providers who all must comply with social distancing protocols. 

Most regional parks’ in-person public programs and events are cancelled until further notice.

Events:

Events in Sonoma County are canceled during summer/fall 2020. The Governor’s Roadmap to Recovery does not currently allow the businesses, or activities like live theaters, concert venues, or festivals to operate at this time. See our events calendar for more information and contact the event organizers directly.

Sonoma County Airport (STS)

Sonoma County’s Charles M. Schulz airport is open, with limited flight service. Check out www.flysts.com for more details. Shuttle service to/from San Francisco and Oakland by Sonoma County Airport Express has been suspended through August 4, 2020.

Health Protocols

Anytime a person is traveling, attention to hygiene is important.  We encourage travelers to follow the safety outlines as provided by the Centers for Disease Control and the Sonoma County Health Officer:

  1. On June 18, the state of California released new guidance mandating the use of cloth face coverings by the general public statewide when outside the home, with limited exceptions. 
  2. You should wear face coverings when in public places, particularly when those locations are indoors or in other areas where physical distancing is not possible.
  3. Wash your hands frequently with an alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.  It is suggested that a 20-second washing is appropriate.
  4. Maintain social distancing. Stay at least 6 feet from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
  5. Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.  The virus enters the body through these three areas.
  6. Practice respiratory hygiene. Cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissues when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
  7. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, do not go into public spaces. Seek medical care.

The CDC has more information on travel recommendations and three levels of travel advisories. 

Should you find yourself feeling ill while in Sonoma County, the region is served by three major healthcare providers:

For more information visit the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 public information website or the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)’s FAQs microsite.  

We hope everyone stays healthy and happy.

Additional Resources