VisitHBURG Blogs

Information on COVID-19 & Travel

WEEKLY EVENTS FROM HOME (APRIL 21, 2020)

 

Hattiesburgers and friends, we know that life looks different right now. While you can't enjoy your favorite events and establishments in person, we have great suggestions for you to stay entertained from home this week! Visit the links below to see how you can enjoy dance, art, music, and more from the safety of your own living room.

 

TUESDAY, APRIL 21, 2020

 

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 22, 2020

 

THURSDAY, APRIL 23, 2020

 

FRIDAY, APRIL 24, 2020

 

SATURDAY, APRIL 25, 2020

 

SUNDAY, APRIL 26, 2020

 

MONDAY, APRIL 27, 2020

 

If you're hosting a virtual event you'd like added to the list, email kbrock@visithburg.org with details. 

 

 

EASTER AND FAMILY MEALS TO-GO (APRIL 8, 2020)

While dine-in services are currently suspended at all Hattiesburg restaurants, local eateries are trying hard to ensure that families can celebrate with traditional Easter meals. The following businesses are offering special family meals available for curbside pickup or delivery this week for the Easter holiday. Visit their Facebook pages or websites for complete details and the latest information. 

 

 

The following businesses are also offering regular family to-go meals during this time:

 

 

For a list of updates on all of Hattiesburg's local restaurants, visit www.visithburg.org/eatlocal.   

 

To submit updates to your restaurant's family offerings or add your eatery to the list, email kbrock@visithburg.org

 

 

COVID-19 UPDATE (APRIL 3, 2020)

This week, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves issued a shelter-in-place order to take effect today, Friday, April 3 at 5 p.m.

 

This order will begin today and last through 8 a.m. on Monday, April 20, 2020 (unless rescinded, modified or extended).

 

To understand what the order means and how it will affect Hattiesburg, see the front and back FAQ the City of Hattiesburg has provided at http://www.hattiesburgms.com/…/uplo…/shelter_8x10doc_faq.pdf.

 

This order is enforceable by law, and both Hattiesburg Police Department (Official) and our neighboring agencies are prepared to respond during this public health crisis.

 

At this time, the City of Hattiesburg has not ordered a curfew. However, it is important that all only do what is essential, go home and then stay home.

 

For all information regarding the city's response to COVID-19, visit hattiesburgms.com/coronavirus.

 

For more details on the shelter-in-place order, visit Governor Tate Reeves' facebook page or find the full document here

 

 

LOCAL RESTAURANT UPDATE (MARCH 31, 2020)

In accordance with guidance from local and state leadership, we continue to encourage the support of small businesses during this time. Please use this list to plan your meals from eateries that have made accommodations following Hattiesburg's social distancing guidelines. 

 

While dine-in services are currently suspended at all Hattiesburg restaurants, the following businesses are offering modified services including curbside pickup and delivery. Many eateries have created packaged meals that will feed the whole family. Visit their Facebook pages or websites for the latest information. 

 

 

Restaurants temporarily closed:

 

 

To submit updates to your restaurant listing or add your eatery to the list, email kbrock@visithburg.org

 

CARES ACT (MARCH 30, 2020)

On March 27, Congress passed and President Trump signed into law a $2 trillion stimulus package. This is the third act in the series of relief packages designed to assist American businesses and workers facing the economic disruption of COVID-19.

CARES ACT SUMMARIES FROM AHLA & NATIONAL RESTAURANT ASSOCIATION
There are two summaries from the American Hotel and Lodging Association and the National Restaurant Association. Much of the information is similar, but each have specific details to their hospitality sector too.  While we are all inundated with information, these best represent relief to our primary tourism sectors.

 

Hotel information

Restaurant information



PHASE 4 STIMULUS

We all understand there are vast needs across our hospitality industries and small businesses.  This bill (Phase 3, CARES ACT) is extremely helpful to fill some of those specific operational and employment needs, but we all know that Phase 3 will not be enough. 

 

What are the unmet needs of this industry, and what additional stimulus and economic relief needs will need to be considered for Phase 4?

 

BUSINESS DISRUPTION INSURANCE
Many policyholders are being told by their insurer that the reduction in operations from COVID-19 does not quality for business disruption insurance. 

 

The National Restaurant Association shared that discussion are ongoing now for the creation of $150 billion fund for the insurance industry to tap into for payouts of these types of insurance policies. They encouraged us to share this and the other needs we work to identify with our Congressional Delegation on the importance of this needed stimulus in Phase 4 of relief legislation.

 

NEW COVID-19 EXECUTIVE ORDERS AND UPDATES (MARCH 25, 2020)

On Tuesday, March 24, 2020, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves signed a new executive order outlining the state's efforts to protect the health and safety of Mississippians. The order details the state's response to the pandemic and strengthens Mississippi's measures to combat the spread of the virus. 

 

Full details on Governor Reeves' executive order can be found here

 

Also on Tuesday, March 24, 2020, Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker held a press conference to announce a new executive order for the city. In the third COVID-19 executive order issued by the City of Hattiesburg, Mayor Barker announced further efforts to safeguard the public's health and slow the spread of virus.

 

To watch a video of the press conference and find complete details on the order issued by Mayor Toby Barker, click here

 

In accordance with the executive orders, we continue to encourage all locals and visitors to support small businesses during this time. Please use this list to plan your meals from eateries that have made accommodations following Mayor Barker's social distancing guidelines. 

 

The below restaurants are offering services including curbside pickup, delivery, and family meals. Visit their Facebook pages or websites for the latest information. 

 

 

Restaurants temporarily closed:

 

 

To submit updates to your restaurant listing or add your eatery to the list, email kbrock@visithburg.org

 

HATTIESBURG SOCIAL DISTANCING ACTIVITIES (MARCH 21, 2020)

 

CITY OF HATTIESBURG POLICY UPDATE (MARCH 21, 2020, Noon)

On Saturday morning, Mayor Toby Barker issued an update to the executive order that was issued on Tuesday, March 17. It goes into effect on Sunday, March 22, and it states:

 

CITY OF HATTIESBURG POLICY UPDATE (MARCH 17, 2020, 5:30PM)

It’s been a tough few days friends, neighbors, and guests. Your VisitHBURG team has been working closely with our local leaders to provide a path forward that greatly supports our local business and hospitality community. We continue to closely monitor the recommendations of the CDC, Mississippi Department of Health, and our local health officials on best practices for restaurants and bars.

Please see the latest information today, signed into effect by executive order from Mayor Barker, on steps we are taking to support our local restaurants while also keeping our community safe.

It’s called THE HATTIESBURG WAY.

We commend Mayor Barker and the leaders of our community on the outstanding work they are doing to provide the latest, most current information to our beloved Hattiesburg. Don’t forget to #EatHBURG and #EatLOCAL. 

Hospitality Sector Highlights (View Full PDF):

 

LOCAL RESTAURANT ACCOMMODATION UPDATE (MARCH 21, 2020, 7:30PM) 

 

 

We encourage all of our locals and visitors to continue to support small businesses during this time. Please use this list to plan your meals while practicing social distancing. As more accommodations are announced, we will add them here. To have your restaurant listed, please email info@visithburg.org. 

 

The below restaurants are offering special Covid-19 accommodations to their customers, including curbside pickup and/or modified hours. Please visit their Facebook pages or websites for the latest information. 

 

 

Restaurants temporarily closed:

 

 

MARCH 15, 2020 UPDATE (6PM)  

 

 

VisitHATTIESBURG is actively and carefully monitoring travel conditions in coordination with the Center for Disease Control, U.S. Travel Association, Mississippi State Department of Health, and local officials regarding COVID-19.  


This is a very challenging, uncertain time, and we send the most compassionate and heartfelt greetings to our locals, visitors, and your families. We hope everyone in our community is listening to the guidance of public health authorities and taking all the necessary precautions to keep themselves and their families safe. 


While we heed the advice of federal, state, and local health officials on social distancing measures and large group gatherings, we wanted to update you on the hospitality options that are available to you in Hattiesburg at this time.  

Hattiesburg’s great selection of restaurants, hotels, and shops are open for business. At the same time, the safety and health of our community and guests will always be the top priority. For that reason, increased measures and more frequent disinfection procedures are in place throughout our hospitality community.

 

We are in direct communication and working with our local businesses, accommodations, and restaurants to make sure they are fulfilling these increased and strict hygiene and health practices. We are grateful to the numerous local restaurants and businesses that have stepped up to ensuring heightened best practices are in place. They greatly value their customers and are working to proudly serve you. In fact, many are looking at new avenues to more conveniently provide you with the goods and services you have grown to love from them! 

Spring is here! It’s gorgeous outside, the grass is getting greener, and it’s getting warmer by the day. We know that many of you didn’t get to go on a planned trip or had to skip a big festival or event that was on your entertainment list for the week. We feel for you, trust us!

 

#BikeHBURG   #PlayHBURG   #ArtHBURG

The good news is there is still much to do in our beautiful Hattiesburg community while safely implementing social distancing practices. Our picturesque outdoor environment, including many of our public parks like the Longleaf Trace, Town Square Park in Downtown Hattiesburg, Pinebelt Blueways on the Leaf River and much more offer many miles of open skies and green spaces. Hiking, biking, canoeing, relaxing, listening to music, and picnicking with a great meal from one of our many restaurants are all excellent options as social distancing activities. Also, feel free to check out our new murals in the Avenues and Downtown to snap your new profile or Instagram pic.

 

 

#EatHBURG

Being in the south, we all know the therapeutic value of “comfort food”! Delicious options are available both call-in and online ordering for take-out and curbside service, and many restaurants are offering delivery services, too. If your meal plans are covered and figured out today, consider purchasing gift cards or a meal for friends, family, or those in need. These are all great options to help support our local Hattiesburg business community while also bringing a little happiness to yourself and others!

Friends, families and guests, please use common sense, be kind to one another, and stay alert to the latest travel advisories. This is an evolving and heightened situation, and we understand there is cause for concern. As any travel advisories or changes occur, we will share them with you.  The City of Hattiesburg has an excellent local resource at http://www.hattiesburgms.com/coronavirus/, too. 

As you enjoy your families and loved ones during this temporary social distancing time, please consider ways in your daily or weekly habits to continue supporting local businesses, restaurants, and others.

Thank you all for being a vital and treasured part of our Hattiesburg community! We will get through this together. 

#WashYourHands    #TeamHBURG

  

WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS

While there are limitations in place for large scale events, Hattiesburg is still open for business. There are no individual travel restrictions in place at this time. We encourage guests to enjoy all that our beautiful community has to offer, use common sense, and stay home if they are sick.

Looking for inspiration? Visit our Facebook or Instagram pages or one of our many blogs that show all the great leisure options in Hattiesburg! At this time, all attractions, restuarants, and dining options are open. 

The health and safety of our visitors and guests will always be of utmost priority, and we will keep you informed if any level of state or domestic travel restrictions are put into effect. As information becomes available to us, we will share it with you. Below is a list of the latest information we have gathered. 

  

MARCH 12, 2020 UPDATE (4:30PM)

The Mississippi State Department of Health held a press conference today and shared information and recommendations regarding COVID-19:

 

MISSISSIPPI STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH

The Mississippi State Department of Health released the following statement yesterday regarding a case of COVID-19 being reported in Mississippi: “Forrest County residents and all Mississippians are not considered at additional risk from this case, and should continue to practice basic protective hygiene to prevent transmission of COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses.”

 

MISSISSIPPI PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES

Additionally, all eight of Mississippi’s public universities are adjusting their class schedules after Spring Break. Students are being encouraged to stay home one additional week with the further potential to participate in classes remotely. More details can be found here.

 

HEALTHY TRAVEL HABITS

We encourage everyone to follow the CDC’s travel and hygiene recommendations on COVID-19 at www.cdc.gov/travel.

 

ACCOMMODATION RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CLEANING

Many of our large accommodations receive guidance from corporate as to the proper sanitization and disinfecting protocol during times like this. For others, follow CDC guidance located here. Clean items including (but not limited to): door handles, telephones, toilets, light switches, remote controls, blowdryers, HVAC controls, faucet handles, and other surfaces frequently. 
 

Restaurants may consider moving items touched by consumers to behind the counter. This keeps customers from touching multiple cups, coffee lids, straws, utensils, and other items and the potential spread of germs where multiple items are handled. By handing items to a customer, the spread of germs may decrease. Offering a new cup for a refill may be feasible.

LOCAL RESOURCES

 

NATIONAL RESOURCES

The latest information from health experts regarding COVID-19 can be found on these websites:

 

CORNOVIRUS HOTLINE

The Mississippi State Department of Health is now operating a hotline for convenient answers to questions about COVID-19 by phone. Mississippi Coronavirus Hotline (8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday): 877-978-6453

 

Note: This site is meant to serve as a general guide and is directly attributed to public health and CDC travel official sources. Individuals should use common sense when making decisions about travel and follow the available guidelines of these direct sources.