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Louisiana moved to Phase 1 post Stay at Home Order on Friday, May 15. More information about Phase 1 and what is allowed and not allowed during this phase is listed below.

Phase 1 guidance will allow essential businesses, as defined by CISA, to remain open. Non-essential businesses (sometimes called “gray area” businesses) and places of worship may remain open at 25 percent of their occupancy. All business owners should read the order to understand which category their business falls into.

New types of businesses that may open beginning on May 15, with 25 percent occupancy limits, sanitation guidelines and spacing for physical distancing include:

  • Gyms and fitness centers
  • Barbershops and hair and nail salons
  • Casinos and Video Poker
  • Theaters
  • Racetracks (not open to spectators)
  • Museums, zoos, aquariums (no tactile exhibits)
  • Bars and breweries with LDH food permits

The following businesses remain closed: massage establishments and spas, tattoo parlors, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, trampoline parks, arcades, fairs, bars and breweries without LDH food permits, pool halls, contact sports, children’s play centers, playgrounds, theme parks, adult entertainment venues, and other similar businesses.

Rapides Parish Specific Updates:

Event cancellations:  Visit our Events Page Here

Parish Information: 

  • Louisiana State University Alexandria moved all classes online Link.
  • Central Louisiana Technical Community College classes are all online. Keep up to date here.
  • Louisiana College is hosting all classes remotely. Keep up to date here.
  • Rapides Parish Schools are closed for the remainder of the school year. Follow posted updates regarding classes with detailed information on their Facebook page; website link.
  • We will continue to work with the Rapides Parish Health Unit, Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness and others to continue to keep you updated on developments.
  • We have not activated any visitor-facing messaging at this point. Our APACVB Crisis Management Plan, which contains public health crises, will guide our Crisis Management Team as needed when needed.
  • As this situation evolves, check with event organizers directly on events that may be impacted or postponed. Due to the proclamation, many events are canceled through May 15.

Our team is in regular contact with the State Tourism Office (Louisiana Travel) and on calls with Destinations International and the U.S. Travel Association to stay informed on the latest updates as it relates to travel.

Links with factual updates:

  • The most up-to-date information for Louisiana is located at the LDH website here.
  • The most up-to-date information on a federal level is available on the CDC’s website here.

On Social Media:


Best practices:

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. Ensure you clean items including (but not limited to): door handles, telephones, toilets, light switches, remote controls, blowdryers, HVAC controls, faucet handles, and other surfaces frequently. Link to ECOLab’s full guidance for Hospitality [download PDF].

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 one to a customer it may help the spread of germs. Also offering a separate new cup for a refill may be feasible. A link to ServSafe’s Coronavirus information is located here. More resources as they become available for restaurants by the National Restaurant’s Association are online at this link. ECOLab has industry-specific information online here. Link to Restaurants [download PDF]; link to Hospitality [download PDF]; link to Food & Beverage Industry [download PDF].

Airbnb and VRBO

-Airbnb and VRBO Guidance for hosts and guests.

Out of Work due to COVID-19?
Louisiana Workforce Commission has information about unemployment
Bartender Emergency Assistance Program

There are a number of informational posters for Coronavirus on the CDC’s website here.

General guidance:

  • The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. As a reminder, the Department of Health always recommends everyday preventive actions to help impede the spread of respiratory diseases, including:
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick
  • Staying home when you are sick and avoiding contact with persons in poor health
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Covering your cough or sneezing with a tissue, then disposing of the issue
  • Washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash your hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe
  • Maintain at least 6 ft of distance between others.
LDH and Gov. John Bel Edwards issued new guidance related to the Coronavirus.

About Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some causing illness in people and others that circulate among animals, including camels, cats, and bats. Rarely, animal coronaviruses can evolve and infect people and then spread between people such as has been seen with recent outbreaks of MERS and SARS.

Questions about Coronavirus?
If you have questions about Coronavirus, please contact the Coronavirus general information line at 1-855-523-2652 from 8 am – 4:30 pm Monday through Friday.

Reported cases have ranged from mild illness (similar to a common cold) to severe pneumonia that requires hospitalization. So far, deaths have been reported mainly in older adults who had other health conditions.

To minimize the risk of spread, Louisiana health officials are working with health care providers to promptly identify and evaluate any suspected cases.

For confirmed infections, reported illnesses have ranged from infected people with little to no symptoms (similar to the common cold) to people being severely ill and dying. Symptoms can include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath/difficulty breathing

CDC believes at this time that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 after exposure.

There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for COVID-19 infection. People infected with COVID-19 should receive supportive care to help relieve symptoms.

How does novel coronavirus spread?
Health experts are still learning the details about how this new coronavirus spreads. Other coronaviruses spread from an infected person to others through:

  • Through respiratory droplets produced when coughing and sneezing
  • Close personal contact
  • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes

What you can do
Take steps to avoid spreading germs from any respiratory diseases by:

  • Getting a flu vaccine and taking flu antivirals if prescribed.
  • Covering your cough.
  • Staying home if you are sick.
  • Washing your hands.

What is the Louisiana Department of Health doing?
We are in contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as other local and national partners to share information.

We have sent information to health care providers around the state with current recommendations for screening and testing for COVID-19, as well as to EMS providers regarding proper protection procedures.
We are holding frequent calls with staff to remain apprised of the latest updates and we are sharing messaging with partners and the public as it becomes available.
Sharing messaging with partners and the public as it becomes available.
Information for the Public

Information from the CDC


COVID-19 Information Alexandria/Pineville Area, Louisiana

Restaurants Offering Take Out
(updated 5/27/2020, 4 pm)

All listed are offering to-go. Click the restaurant to see the services offered. We will be updating this list as regularly as we can.

How to Support Open Local Shops
(updated 5/20/2020 3:30 pm)

Some shops have opened there other days and others are offering ways to shop online still. Most are asking that you wear a mask when entering the store to protect workers and yourselves. Shops are taking numerous extra precautions as they open their doors and many that are open are still offering online options.


Other Open Spots in the community: