UPDATE: Gov. Murphy put the brakes on indoor dining for July 2 return. For details, click here

TRENTON, NJ — As New Jersey progresses through the second stage of its restart and recovery plan, this week will be marked with various reopenings.

Beginning on June 29 with shopping malls opening indoors, a host of other establishments and activities will return on July 2 (see graphic above), including indoor dining on a limited basis.

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While food and drink establishments will be permitted to operate up to 25 percent capacity, patrons will be required to order and consume food or beverages while seated — but will not be allowed to walk around with them. Here are the additional restrictions being placed on indoor dining:

  • Tables where individuals or groups are seated must be at least six feet apart in all directions from any other table or seat
  • Individual seats in any shared area that is not reserved for individual groups, such as an indoor bar area, must also six feet apart in all directions from any other table or seat.
  • Patrons must wear face coverings while inside the indoor premises of a food or beverage establishment, except when seated at their table or in their individual seat. This requirement does not apply to patrons with a medical reason for not wearing a face covering or children under age 2.
  • Food or beverage establishments with table service may only allow patrons to place orders when seated, and only members of the wait staff may bring food or beverages to seated patrons.
  • All health and safety standards issued by the state Department of Health, including infection control practices and other sanitization protocols, must be followed.

Also included under Executive Order 157, signed by Gov. Phil Murphy on June 26, are baseline requirements for indoor recreational and entertainment businesses, which can open on July 2 at 25 percent capacity, except for gyms and fitness centers, movie theaters, performing arts centers, other concert venues, and indoor amusement and water parks. In addition, dance floors at any business must be closed or cordoned off. 

However, gyms and fitness centers are permitted to offer individualized indoor instruction by appointment only. If a gym or fitness center is offering multiple simultaneous instructions at the facility, these instructions must take place in separate rooms or, if they take place in the same room, must be separated by a floor-to-ceiling barrier that complies with all fire code requirements.

Also on July 2, playgrounds will be permitted to open and personal care services that would require the removal of a face covering, such as facials, can resume as along as requirements issued by the Division of Consumer Affairs and the Department of Health are followed.

Click here for Executive Order 157.

Click here for the Department of Health's updated executive directive on outdoor and indoor dining.

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