COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Resources

Updated April 8, 2020 | 2:45 pm

As public health concerns continue around COVID-19 (coronavirus), we are continuing to add reliable resources and information to this page. If you have resources to share, please email

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has issued a “Stay at Home” order effective on Friday, March 27, 2020 at 11:59 pm, and extended until Monday, May 4, 2020.

More information at and #StayAtHomeMN FAQ

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz extended the Emergency Executive Orders 20-04 / 20-08 by issuing Order 20-33 providing for the temporary closure of bars, restaurants, and other places of public accommodation until May 4, 2020. This applies to all Minnesota theaters and venues.

Additionally, to protect the public’s health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19, events as described below should be postponed or canceled across the state of Minnesota. MDH will continue to evaluate the situation and may recommend opening earlier or staying cancelled for longer. These events include those scheduled by communities and organizations but also by individuals. The following is intended to provide general guidance for mitigation strategies. Organizers or settings may need to take into consideration unique risks and make decisions that are protective of their communities.

MDH & CDC recommend postponing and canceling until further notice:

  • Events where 50 people or more would gather, including but not limited to:
    • Concerts.
    • Conferences.
    • Professional, college, and school performances or sporting events.
    • Festivals.
    • Parades.
    • Weddings.
    • Other types of assemblies.
  • Smaller events (fewer than 50 people) that are held in crowded auditoriums, rooms, or other venues that do not allow social distancing of 6 feet per person.
  • Events with more than 10 people where the majority of participants are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, including gatherings such as those at:
    • Retirement facilities.
    • Assisted living facilities.
    • Developmental homes.
    • Support groups for people with health conditions.
  • Events of any size should only be continued if they can be carried out with adherence to guidelines for protecting vulnerable populations, hand hygiene, and social distancing. When feasible, organizers could modify events to be virtual.
  • More information is available at CDC: Get Your Mass Gatherings or Large Community Events Ready.

More information about current recommendations available at:

Consider these Principals for Ethical Cancellation from Springboard for the Arts.

What is COVID-19?

According to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are estimated to cause about a third of all cases of the common cold. COVID-19 is a strand of the coronavirus causing respiratory illnesses that have not been found in people before. Because this is a new virus, there are still things we do not know, such as how severe the illness can be, how well it is transmitted between people, and other features of the virus.

Frequent updates can raise awareness, but can also cause anxiety and fear — not just about the virus, but also about who has and/or is spreading the virus. It is important to remember that COVID-19 is not racially or culturally specific.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most vulnerable populations are the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.

We encourage the performing arts community to monitor the situation through the CDC and MDH, comply with public health guidelines and recommendations, actively promote actions to prevent further spread (see below), and take this opportunity to develop and/or evaluate emergency preparedness plans.

Prevention (from the Center for Disease Control)

The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19. There are simple everyday actions you can take to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces regularly.
  • Follow the CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
    • The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from Coronavirus. 
    • The CDC does recommend that people who show symptoms of Coronavirus or other respiratory illness wear a facemask. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and caretakers, and it is important that these health care professionals are able to access this necessary equipment easily. 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Stay home if you are sick, except when seeking medical care. 
  • Get your flu vaccine if you have not already.

Official Updates

Minnesota State Official Dashboards: COVID-19, Response and Preparation, #StayAtHomeMN Information

Center for Disease Control: COVID-19

Minnesota Department of Health: COVID-19

World Health Organization: COVID-19

University of Minnesota Public Health Alerts Page

City of Minneapolis Office of Emergency Management: Coronavirus

Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development: COVID-19

Minnesota Department of Revenue: COVID-19

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and Unemployment Benefits

Johns Hopkins: Mapping 2019-nCoV
( Mobile Version & Desktop Version )

Language Examples

It’s important to communicate clearly with artists and audiences about our policies, practices, and planning. Please see information above about CDC and MDH recommendations, as well as statewide Emergency Executive Orders. Here are some examples of communications distributed recently by performing arts organizations:

COVID-19 Response from Great River Shakespeare Festival & Video Announcement
Winona, MN

An Update on COVID-19 from HUGE Improv Theater (3/16/2020)
Minneapolis, MN

COVID-19 Update from Yale Rep (3/16/2020)
New Haven, CT

COVID-19 Information from the Jungle Theater (3/13/2020)
Minneapolis, MN

Northrup’s Response to COVID-19 Impact (3/19/2020)
Minneapolis, MN

Coronavirus COVID-19 Information from the Ordway (3/24/2020)
Saint Paul, MN

A Message About COVID-19 from the Guthrie Theater (4/2/2020)
Minneapolis, MN

Preparation & Prevention Resources

Coronavirus/COVID-19 Resources for Artists
From Springboard for the Arts

Minnesota COVID-19 Response
Information and Resources from a coalition of Nonprofit and Union Partners

Interim Guidance for Event Planners
From Center for Disease Control (CDC)

Preparing for the Impact of the Coronavirus
From Theater Communications Group (TCG)

Key planning recommendations for Mass Gatherings in the context of the current COVID-19 outbreak
From World Health Organization (WHO)

Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers
From Center for Disease Control (CDC)

Preparing for Potential Impact of the Coronavirus
From ArtsReady

COVID-19: What nonprofits need to know
From Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

COVID-19 Update and Resources
From CERF+ (The Artist Safety Net)

Rural Leader COVID-19 Resources

Webinar Recordings

Panel: Artists In a Time of Global Pandemic (ASL & Captioned)
HowlRound Free Webinar (1:58:19)
For US-Based Freelance Artists and Cultural Workers in all Disciplines
Join HowlRound plus a group of artists, arts administrators, and others from around the US on Monday 16 March 2020 who discussed how COVID-19 is impacting freelance artists (those who identify as independent contractors) from all disciplines and where artists can look for support in this complicated moment. The conversation focused on shared resources (legal, advocacy, how to take your work virtual, finding emergency funding, and financial best practices in crisis) and building and grounding our national community.

Prepare Your Organization for the Coronavirus Disease Outbreak
Event Safety Alliance Free Webinar (1:04:54)
This webinar was held on March 4th, and looks at this public health crisis from two distinct perspectives: Infectious Disease Business Continuity Planning and Crisis Management. Does your organization have the right plans in place to continue operations during an infectious disease outbreak? Is there a process in place to gather and analyze current information and make informed decisions? Is there a crisis management process and team in place? When do you activate them? By preparing in advance, you can take actions that help to minimize the effect on your events. We will look at the eight items you should be paying attention to right now.

Coronavirus Webinar: Preparing Minnesota’s Foundations and Nonprofit Organizations for Coronavirus
Minnesota Council on Foundations Free Webinar (55:01)
This webinar was held on March 4th in partnership with the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, the State of Minnesota, and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy. Its purpose was to help nonprofits and foundations think about their own internal continuity of operations, as well as thinking about the external services they provide and how needs may evolve and increase as a result of an outbreak. Our featured speaker was Tanya Gulliver-Garcia from the Center for Disaster Philanthropy.

Responding to COVID-19 Related Racism and Misinformation

Springboard for the Arts Community Emergency Relief Fund
“With the global spread of the coronavirus, there is also a spread in misinformation, often rooted in xenophobia or stereotypes. If you are an artist whose community is impacted, the Community Emergency Relief Fund is a resource for your creative response. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.” – Facebook Post about COVID-19

Yellow Peril: Resources to Address Coronavirus Racism
A crowd-sourced list of textual and digital resources around Coronavirus related racism

Other Resources

Personal Emergency Relief Fund
From Springboard for the Arts

Emergency Resources for Organizations
From Springboard for the Arts

COVID-19 Freelance Artist Resources

Ideas for Creative, Compassions, and Joyful Connection
From the Department of Public Transformation

Dramatists Guild Foundation Emergency Grants

Principals for Ethical Cancellation
From Springboard for the Arts