Things to Do

Charlotte Moves Into Phase Two: Here’s What You Need to Know

Beginning Friday, May 22 at 5.p.m. and through at least the next five weeks, North Carolina will move to a Safer-at-Home order (Phase Two), meaning that some restrictions are lifted as the city moves toward a new normal.

Here’s what you need to know about what’s able to re-open under Phase Two:

  • Restaurants are able to serve dine-in customers with limitations.
  • Personal care and grooming establishments can open (employees must wear face coverings) and public swimming pools can operate at 50 percent capacity. This includes barber shops, massage therapists, salons and tattoo parlors.
  • Day camps and childcare facilities are open to all and overnight camps can open.

This is in addition to the retail shops and outdoor recreational areas that were allowed to re-open in Phase One, with their respective restrictions still in place.

Charlotteans can now gather outdoors in groups of 25 (an increase from 10), with a cap-restriction on groups still at 10 people if congregating indoors. Working from home continues to be encouraged for businesses.

Under Phase Two, bars, nightclubs and indoor entertainment venues (i.e. movie theaters, bowling alleys) remain closed as do indoor gyms/fitness centers, playgrounds, amusement parks and museums.

While moving to Phase Two brings a sense of progress and hope with re-openings, it’s even more important to follow social distancing measures and continue to practice the “Ws”:

  • Wear a mask covering your face.
  • Wait six feet apart and avoid close contact.
  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds as often as possible.

For a list of health and safety measures, visit our COVID-19 Resources page.

Safer-at-Home differs from Stay-at-Home in that you’re still considered safest while inside your home, and that at-risk populations should especially take this into consideration.

Take a look at the following updates and new ways you can enjoy the city and support local businesses during Phase Two in Charlotte.


CATS Lynx Light Rail and Buses: Modified schedules remain in place, but starting on Monday, June 8, fare collection will resume and service frequency will increase on select bus routes and the LYNX Blue Line.

Lime and Spin Scooters: Both companies are continuing to operate with a limited capacity; you’ve probably seen them in the Uptown and South End neighborhoods, as well as around medical facilities.

Restaurants and Breweries

Thinking of heading to a restaurant? Here’s more about what you can expect:

  • Restaurants and breweries (if they sell food and/or produce alcoholic beverages for commercial sale off-premises) can open.
  • Tables must be six feet apart.
  • Table sizes should stay under six people unless the party is all from the same household.
  • Patrons are recommended to wait outside until their table is ready.
  • Hand sanitizer should be made available to all customers at entrances.
  • All restaurants are required to follow additional sanitation measures and employee symptom screening.
  • Additional recommendations include contactless pay options, limited condiments on tables, encouraged mask-wearing for employees, staggered seating times, designated ordering areas, use of disposable menus and linens, and other items to reduce contact between people.

Many local eateries will post updates on their social media channels with specific details and re-opening dates, so make sure to check in before heading out to your favorite restaurant.

Check out a few of the city’s establishments that are ready to welcome back diners.


The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
Neighborhoods: LoSo

The well-loved brewery and restaurant is opening at reduced capacity for both its indoor and outdoor areas. The children’s play area will remain closed.


The Goodyear House
Neighborhood: NoDa

Head to this neighborhood hotspot for some classic feel-good fare. The outdoor patio will be first-come, first-served and reservations, which you can make on OpenTable, are required for inside seating.


Ilios Crafted Greek
Neighborhood: South End

The fast casual Greek restaurant in South End opened just in time for dine-in customers. With family meal options, salads, spit-fire souvla and pita sandwich options, there’s something to make the whole group happy. Ilios also has a small patio for outdoor seating.


Bistro La Bon
Neighborhood: Plaza Midwood and Cotswold

Lavender chicken anyone? Neighborhood favorite Bistro La Bon is opening its doors during Phase Two at both locations.


Fahrenheit Charlotte
Neighborhood: Uptown

Date night is back at Fahrenheit Charlotte. Sip cocktails and enjoy some of the city’s best views on the rooftop. Reservations are required.


The Waterman Fish Bar
Neighborhood: South End

Grab a dozen oysters and other seafood delicacies at The Waterman Fish Bar. They’ll have a limited menu to start, and you can enjoy it all on the airy rooftop.

Of course, you can continue to support your favorite restaurants while still social distancing. For a full list of locations participating in curbside pickup, takeout and/or delivery, visit the Pitch In. Take Out. page.

Phase Two stands in effect until at least Friday, June, 26 and respecting the new guidelines is imperative if the city and state are to move forward. And just like with prior orders, Phase Two may be extended. Phase Three is expected to include plans for more businesses, like gyms and entertainment venues to re-open, as well as potentially increasing capacity and the amount of people allowed at gatherings.

For now, enjoy the outdoors, go for a swim, head to your favorite restaurant, and get a haircut, but practice social distancing. Stay safe and healthy out there, Charlotte.