NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – As part of Governor Cooper’s Safer at Home Phase 2 of reopening, New Hanover County will reopen more services, including curbside library services and park shelter reservations on Tuesday, May 26. The Cape Fear Museum and the Senior Resource Center will remain closed to the public, until more guidance is received from the state.
“I want to thank county staff for their tireless work in continuing governance and service to our residents under these unprecedented circumstances, and for their innovation that allows for the reopening of additional services while maintaining safety measures to protect colleagues and customers from the spread of COVID-19,” said New Hanover County Board of Commissioners Chair Julia Olson-Boseman. “It’s important to remember that the measures we’ve taken so far have worked to limit the impact of COVID-19 in our community, so we can increase activity. And it’s also important to remember to continue our protective measures of wearing a face covering when out in public, washing our hands and staying home as much as possible so we can continue moving forward toward phase three of reopening.”
New Hanover County’s Government Center, Health and Human Services building and 320 Chestnut building are operating with regular business hours to serve the public. The Cape Fear Museum and the Senior Resource Center will remain closed to the public, until more guidance is received from the state. (Virtual services are still offered, and the Senior Resource Center is continuing meal service and other supports).
Most county business and services can continue to be conducted by phone or online, so residents are encouraged to continue accessing services remotely and only visit county facilities for essential reasons. Department resources and contact information can be found at NHCgov.com.
Temperature checks will no longer be conducted at county facilities. If visiting county facilities is necessary, residents and visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing and wear face coverings to protect staff and other patrons.
Most county operations, including the Coronavirus Call Center, will be closed on Monday, May 25, for Memorial Day. The county’s landfill will be open to the public, but the HazWagon and Household Hazardous Waste facility will be closed.
New Hanover County Public Libraries will return to curbside pickup of materials (books, DVDs, audiobooks, etc.) beginning Tuesday, May 26. Patrons can view and reserve materials for pickup at their location of choice at https://nhcpl.tlcdelivers.com/. Once notification is received that the material is ready, library patrons can proceed to the designated library for pickup. At the curbside pickup site, a phone number will be posted to call and provide library staff reservation information, including your library card number. Staff will complete the checkout and place the materials outside.
Curbside pickup hours at all library locations are Monday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sunday 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Beginning Tuesday, May 26, library materials may be returned in outside book drops. The library is not charging overdue fees at this time, so there is no need to return items during the first week of opening. To stagger the volume of returns and reduce traffic around book drops, patrons are asked to follow the schedule below based on the first letter of your last name.
At this time, donations will not be accepted at any library branch.
Ebooks, databases, downloadable music, streaming video, homework support and other social distancing activities can be found at www.nhclibrary.org. Live chat is also available through the library’s website, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Live chat is also available through the library’s website, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For information and assistance, please call your library branch Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., or Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Main Library: 798-6301
Northeast Library: 798-6371
Pine Valley Library: 798-6391
Pleasure Island Library: 798-6385
Sports fields in county parks will be open for general recreation use starting Tuesday, but all activity must comply with mass gathering restrictions of 25 people outdoors. Playgrounds and outdoor gyms will remain closed, as well as the Splash Pad at Hugh MacRae Park. As Hugh MacRae Park is within the City of Wilmington, activity and closures will adhere to the City of Wilmington’s restrictions, found here.
Fitness stations along trails will be open, and shelters are available for reservations for groups of no more than 25 at https://parks.nhcgov.com/, and social distancing must be followed.
As additional information, weddings can now take place in parks and gardens. Based on the Governor’s Phase 2, the ceremony is not limited to the mass gathering rules (but must comply with physical distancing); but receptions held at a park or garden would have to comply and have no more than 25 people outside or 10 inside.
Over Memorial Day weekend and beyond, Health officials continue to encourage the public to take personal protective actions to help keep the rate of COVID-19 low and to slow the spread of the virus:
As of 1 p.m. on Friday, May 22, 2020, there have been 148 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New Hanover County. For more information about COVID-19 in New Hanover County, visit Health.NHCgov.com, call our Public Health Coronavirus Call Center at 910-798-6800, and follow the county’s trusted social media pages: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Nextdoor.