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See the latest news and updates about COVID-19 and its impact on the Charlotte region, the Carolinas and beyond.

Mecklenburg Health Directive Leads To Museum, Library, Recreation Closures

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A surprise directive from Mecklenburg County Public Health Director Gibbie Harris on Tuesday afternoon said that for the next three weeks, county residents should "utilize full-virtual options for work, school and other activity where in-person activity is not required.” COVID-19 community spread is at its highest level of the pandemic.

That led to Charlotte museums to announce closures on Wednesday for the duration of the directive. The Mint Museum, Levine Museum of the New South, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, Discovery Place and McColl Center all said they would close until at least Feb. 2

"Though the museum is not required to close, this is a preemptive measure to help curb the community spread of COVID-19," the Mint Museum said in a news release.

“As we work with county officials to minimize the spread, the safety of visitors and staff is paramount,” said Mint president and CEO Todd A. Herman.

The Gantt Center said its Martin Luther King Holiday Weekend Virtual Celebration — a virtual film series that begins Friday and a full day of music, performances, discussions and activities Monday — will be presented virtually.

Additionally, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library announced that it will limit services to "grab and go" pickups of holds and mobile printing until Feb. 2.

“The library is taking the Mecklenburg County directive seriously and adjusting service levels in a responsible way that focuses on safety for our customers and our staff,” said Caitlin Moen, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library's director. “We’ll continue to bring back in-person services as it is safe to do so and in a way that meets safety requirements as outlined by the state and the county.”

Meanwhile, the county's aquatic center is closed, along with the skate park at Naomi Drenan Recreation Center. Reservations are suspended at athletic fields, and in-person payments at the tax collector office are temporarily suspended. Parks, nature preserves, and greenways will remain open.

A complete list of reduced county services can be found at mecknc.gov.

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