L.A. County’s new restrictions on gatherings: What you need to know

Singers perform for   passersby on the Hermosa Beach Pier.
Tony Drockton of Hermosa Beach, left, is joined by his nephew Daniel, son Riley (in red) and niece Deanna (on guitar) as they serenade passersby with a “Thanksgiving song” on the Hermosa Beach Pier.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles County on Friday announced more restrictions on public and private gatherings as it battles an unprecedented surge in coronavirus infections.

The move comes just two days after the county suspended outdoor dining at restaurants as cases spiked to new highs, with officials saying some hospitals could be close to capacity within weeks. Countywide COVID-19 hospitalizations have already more than doubled in just three weeks, from about 800 on Halloween to nearly 1,900 Friday.

The basics

The new rules put capacity limits on businesses, further restrict gatherings and close many playgrounds, among other things. They go into effect Monday and will last until at least Dec. 20.


Here is a rundown:


  • All public and private gatherings with individuals not in your household are prohibited, except for religious services and protests, which are constitutionally protected rights.


  • Occupancy is limited at various businesses; all individuals at these sites are required to wear face coverings and keep at least six feet of distance:
  • Essential retail – 35% maximum occupancy
  • Nonessential retail (includes indoor malls) – 20% maximum occupancy
  • Personal care services – 20% maximum occupancy
  • Libraries – 20% maximum occupancy
  • Fitness centers operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
  • Museums, galleries, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
  • Mini-golf, batting cages, go-kart racing operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy

The latest maps and charts on the spread of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County, including cases, deaths, closures and restrictions.


  • Recreation activities require face coverings (except for swimming) and distancing:
    • Beaches, trails, and parks remain open; gatherings with people outside your household are prohibited.
    • Golf courses, tennis courts, pickleball, archery ranges, skate parks, bike parks, and community gardens remain open for individuals or members of a single household. Pools that serve more than one household may open only for regulated lap swimming with one person per lane.
    • Drive-in movies/events/car parades are permitted provided occupants in each car are members of one household


  • All schools and day camps remain open adhering to reopening protocols. K-12 schools and day camps with an outbreak (three cases or more over 14 days) should close for 14 days

Closed nonessential businesses/activities:

  • Playgrounds (with the exception of playgrounds at childcare centers and schools)
  • Card rooms

Source: County of Los Angeles