New Hanover to reopen more services starting Tuesday

New Hanover to reopen more services starting Tuesday
The New Hanover County government center (Source: WECT)

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - New Hanover County announced on Friday that it will reopen more county services beginning Tuesday, as part of North Carolina’s Phase Two reopening.

“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," said Julia Olson-Boseman, chair of the New Hanover County Commission.

County facilities

  • New Hanover County’s Government Center, Health and Human Services building and 320 Chestnut building are operating with regular business hours
  • The Cape Fear Museum and the Senior Resource Center will remain closed to the public until more guidance is received from the state
  • Most county businesses 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
  • 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.

Library Services

  • New Hanover County Public Libraries will return to curbside pickup of materials (books, DVDs, audiobooks) beginning Tuesday.
  • Patrons can view and reserve materials for pickup at their location of choice at
  • 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.

Library Returns

  • Beginning Tuesday, May 26, library materials may be returned in outside book drops.
  • Libraries are not charging overdue fees at this time, so there is no need to return items during the first week of opening.
  • Officials ask that residents stagger the volume of returns and reduce traffic around book drops, and 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.
Last name starts with Return Items
A through D Tuesday
E through I Wednesday
J through N Thursday
O through S Friday
T through V Saturday
W through Z Sunday

Parks and gardens

  • 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, and social distancing must be followed.
  • Weddings can now take place in parks and gardens. 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.

Slow the spread

Over Memorial Day weekend and beyond, county 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:

  • Wear cloth face coverings in public settings.
  • If you must leave your home, follow proper physical distancing protocols: don’t gather in groups and stay at least 6 feet away from others.
  • Stay home if you are sick, even if you are an essential worker. And cover your coughs and sneezes.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched (like your phone, tablet, countertops and daily work surfaces).
  • Comply with state and municipal restrictions and/or recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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