Some COVID-19 Restrictions Eased; Masking Still Required

Governor Larry Hogan announced the end of some restrictions and the reduction of others during a press conference on Tuesday, March 9th. These changes do not signal the end of the pandemic. Other safety measures remain in effect to continue to protect the many Marylander’s who have not yet been able to be vaccinated.

Garrett County will follow the lead of the state and adopt the changes in the COVID-19 mitigation measures beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, March 12th.

One of the key protective measures that remains in effect is Maryland’s statewide masking order, which requires masks or face coverings to be worn at any public indoor facility and in all public outdoor areas whenever it is not possible to maintain physical distancing.

Some of the changes that will take effect on Friday include:

  • Capacity limits will be lifted on outdoor and indoor dining at restaurants and bars, retail businesses, religious facilities, fitness centers, casinos, personal services, and indoor recreational establishments. Bars and restaurants will be open for seated and distanced service only—patrons may not stand at a crowded bar.
  • Large outdoor and indoor venues may begin operating at 50% capacity. This includes theaters; concert, convention, and wedding venues; racing facilities, and outdoor entertainment and sporting venues.
  • Medical adult day care centers may reopen, with facilities able to set appropriate restrictions and safety measures.
  • Quarantine requirements and other restrictions on out-of-state travel will be lifted. However, a Maryland Department of Health (MDH) travel advisory will remain in place, and Marylanders are encouraged to get tested for COVID-19 upon their return from out-of-state travel.

The Governor also announced that the Western Maryland mass vaccination site at the Prime Outlets in Hagerstown will open on Thursday, March 25.

Additional COVID-19 resources:

  • Garrett County residents visit to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment or to fill out an interest form to be contacted when an appointment may be available for you. Current qualifying individuals include Phase 1A, Phase 1B (including individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities), or those at least age 65. For assistance in registering call 301-334-7698.
  • If you have COVID-19 like symptoms, schedule a testing appointment at the Health Department by calling 301-334-7697.
  • Free COVID-19 testing is available (with or without symptoms) on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the MEDCO Building in the McHenry Business Park. Pre-registration is recommended. Visit for more information.
  • For all other COVID-19 related questions, or to report a COVID-19 compliance issue, call the local COVID-19 Hotline number at 301-334-7698.