Great Falls Montana Tourism is here to help you stay current on COVID-19 related changes in Great Falls, Montana. Know, if you are here, or traveling through, our team is here to help you stay safe and healthy.
If you have other destinations to visit while in Montana, please read these travel alerts provided by the Montana Office of Tourism.
On March 27th, 2020, Montana Governor Bullock issued a Stay at Home Directive to slow the spread of COVID-19 until April 10th, 2020. This leaves only essential businesses open.
On March 29th, 2020, President Trump extended the Slow the Spread – Social Distancing Guidelines to April 30th. 2020.
On March 30th, 2020, Montana Governor Bullock issued a Mandatory Quarantine Directive for certain travelers arriving in Montana. This requires 14-day self-quarantine for persons arriving in Montana.
On April 7th, 2020, Montana Governor Bullock issued a Directive to Extend Stay at Home Directives to slow the spread of COVID-19 until April 24th, 2020.
On April 22nd, 2020, Montana Governor Bullock issued a Directive on Phased Reopening of Montana with Phase 1 beginning April 26th.
On May 4th, 2020, Restaurants, Bars and Casinos are allowed to open to the public at 50% capacity in accordance with Phase 1 of Reopening of Montana.
On June 1st, 2020, Restaurants, Bars and Casinos are allowed to operate at 75% capacity in accordance with Phase 2 of Reopening Montana. Groups of 50 people or less are allowed without social distancing requirements. Groups over 50 must have physically distancing.
On July 15th, 2020, Montana Governor Bullock issued a mandate to wear a face-covering in counties in Montana with 4 or more active COVID-19 cases. Great Falls Montana Tourism has masks available for guests at 100 1st Avenue North, Lower Level Suite.
On August 28th, 2020, The C.M. Russell Museum will close until September 17th. This decision is in response to a symptomatic employee. While this employee has not received a positive Covid-19 test result, the Museum wants to make this proactive step to best protect patrons and the staff as a whole.
On October 28th, 2020, The Cascade County City-County Board of Health to impose stricter measures beginning November 1st, 2020 in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the community. The maximum attendance for indoor and outdoor events will be reduced to 50 people, regardless of whether distancing can be achieved. Food and drink establishments will have their capacities reduced to 50%. These measures will remain in effect until the country drops to a rate of 25 per 100,000 new cases per day for four weeks, according to the county.
On November 17th, 2020, Governor Bullock expanded the mask mandate to state wide starting November 20th, 2020. Restaurants, bars, casinos and breweries will be limited to 50% capacity and must close by 10:00 PM. No more than six people are allowed at a table. Gatherings cannot exceed 25 people, and the governor urged people to avoid getting together with more than 15 people.
SO, WHAT DOES THAT REALLY MEAN?
- Wear your mask indoors
When entering a public building, you have to don your mask. So whether that means going shopping downtown, entering a museum, or walking into a restaurant, you have to #MaskUp. When wearing your mask in restaurants, please wear it when you are not at your table. So when you are walking in and being seated, walk to the restroom, or walk up to the hostess stand to let them know that more members of your party on their way, you have to mask up. But, when you are sitting at your table, there is no need to wear your mask. Also, children under the age of 5 years old do not have to wear a mask.
- Keep your groups small (50 folks or less)
This one should be fairly easy to understand. When you’re gathering with friends and family, keep it to 50 or less!
- Maintain a 6 foot distance
When you are indoors, remember that along with wearing your mask, you should also keep a 6 foot distance from other people. So when you and your spouse are shopping and see a crowded aisle in a store, browse a different area or wait your turn. If you are outdoors and on the trail and cannot keep a 6 foot distance, mask up or wait a bit before continuing to decrease congestion.
- Be patient and kind as experiences may have restrictions
While you are enjoying your stay in Great Falls responsibly, remember that your experience may have some limitations. Our city is glad to welcome responsible travelers, but please remember that our business owners and hoteliers are trying their best to have safe business practices at this time. Hours may be reduced, sudden closures may occur, and certain areas of businesses may be restricted. While owners are trying to keep their website updated to reflect their current operations amongst other things, please feel free to call beforehand to verify their hours and learn about any limitations. Great Falls Montana Tourism is happy to help with any of your planning needs!
- Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer
Please remember to regularly wash your hands. Many of our businesses have hand sanitizers at their counters and throughout their establishment to promote a clean environment. Some businesses may even ask you to sanitizer upon entry, which is a great reminder because sometimes we all forget.
- Cover coughs and sneezes
Once again, this one should be an easy one to understand, but we thought we would give you some further clarification. If you have to cough or sneeze, cover up! Make sure to wash your hands after!
WHAT WE ARE ASKING YOU TO DO
Montana Aware is a statewide effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 by promoting safety measures for those traveling in the state. We are committed to protecting the health of residents and visitors, and we ask you to do the same. Great Falls Montana Tourism a part of this effort has free face masks for visitors and businesses in the local area. Here is what we are asking you to do if you plan on traveling through Montana:
- Know the local public health guidelines before arriving at your destination.
We’ll gladly help clarify!
- Understand some services and destinations may be limited.
Hey, a phone call never hurt anyone (except for the cast of Scream and countless other Halloween horror films) and is the best way to get up to date information about the establishment you want to visit.
- Stay home if you are sick.
You’re probably cranky if you are sick, too. So stay home and Visit Great Falls, Virtually instead.
Great Falls Montana is open! If you get the hankering to breathe fresh air, experience diverse landscapes, and enjoy outdoor adventures while keeping your distance – we are ready for you- and so are our lodging properties! The Montana Hotel and Lodging Association is adapting the Stay Safe Enhanced Cleaning and Safety protocols in response to COVID-19. For more information: click here!
Greetings from Great Falls Montana. As we enter into phase two of reopening the big sky, we wanted to welcome our out of state visitors, as the 14 day travel quarantine mandate is now lifted. Here at Great Falls Montana Tourism, we wanted to refresh our visitors on the use of wearing a cloth mask, what 6 feet looks like here in Great falls, as well important information to have while you are here. The City-County Health Department’s number is 406-454-6950.
During Phase 2 of Reopening the Big Sky, Restaurants, Bars, and Casinos can operate at 75% capacity. While larger establishments can easily accommodate the increased amount of people while maintaining social distancing requirements, our smaller establishments will continue to safely operate at 50% capacity.
Great Falls has 53 miles of paved trail, 5 state parks, 3 rivers, and ample opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Please respect our lands, both public and private. Do your part in conserving the area by taking only photographs and leaving only footprints. If you do take photos, make sure to tag us in your photos!
LOCAL, STATE AND FEDERAL RESOURCES
Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services is the State health authority for Montana and part of the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force. Use this resource for updates on COVID-19 cases in Montana and announcements from the Governor of the State of Montana.
Cascade City County Health Department is the local health authority for Great Falls, Montana. Please contact this resource if you need additonal information or start to feel sick while in Great Falls, Montana. Our health facilities ask that you do not show up before calling. Call Casdcade City County Health Department at 406-454-6950.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is part of the United States of America’s COVID-19 Team that includes the White House and Federal Emergency Management Agency. Get updates from the President and guideance from Federal Health Officials.
Great Falls Development Authority is the local Economic Development Organization. Their team is available to connect businesses to all resources available to help them, especially those made available through Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.