things to do in salem, city of salem ma covid-19 update october 2020

Hey everyone welcome back to the blog. For today I have some updates for you regarding COVID-19 and Salem, MA this October. I know, not the most fun content, but this information is important and I promised tons of you guys updates as we get them.

This information is current as of Oct. 1, 2020.

Per the city of Salem:

  • “Despite declining case numbers that may qualify the community to move to Step 2 of Phase III in the state’s reopening, out of extreme caution as the October season approaches the City is remaining in Step 1 until early November, at the earliest. Find out more about the phased reopening at
  • To help reduce the spread of COVID-19 during October, street performers and buskers should not locate on the Essex Street Pedestrian Mall and adjacent areas. The City also cancelled outdoor vendors from the Mall area for the month.
  • Salem is maintaining the limit of no more than six people per table at restaurants. While the state has increased that number to ten, locally the number will remain at six for the month of October.
  • The Salem Board of Health is in the process of instituting a local reporting form for travelers staying overnight in any Salem hotel, motel, inn, bed and breakfast, or short-term rental. Travelers from low-risk states will not be required to complete the form. More details will be available in the coming days.
  • The City of Salem’s ordinance prohibiting the use of disposable bags at businesses is once again in effect as of October 1st. You can find the ordinance at
  • High Rock Church will hold another free community mask distribution event at the City parking lot at 297 Bridge Street on Sunday, October 4th from noon to 2:00 p.m.
  • Guidance about trick-or-treat activities can be found at
  • Earlier this week the City held a briefing for local businesses about COVID-19 restrictions and the October season. You can listen to the briefing in the latest FYI Salem podcast, available at
  • Free COVID-19 testing in Salem through the Commonwealth’s “Stop the Spread” program takes place at Salem High School, 77 Willson Street, as a walk-up or drive-through. No proof of insurance or citizenship is required, and you do not need to be symptomatic to receive this testing. Testing is offered Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Free COVID-19 testing will also take place at Palmer Cove in the Point neighborhood on Saturday, October 3rd from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • The City of Salem has issued an updated reopening policy for municipal buildings and offices based on changing case and transmission data. The new policy can be found at
  • The most recent Economic Recovery Task Force newsletter can be found here: En espanol:

Status of Cases

As of 7:00 p.m. on October 1, 2020, there were 846 Salem residents who have tested positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19), of which 193 cases are currently active. 41 Salem residents have died from the virus. Since the outbreak began, 756 Salem residents who had been infected by the virus have cleared their isolation period.

As of September 30, 2020, Salem’s case rate per 100,000 people was 0.6% more than the state’s case rate. Since the start of the pandemic, 24,618 tests have been conducted on Salem residents. The percent of Salem residents testing positive for the two-week period of September 16-30, 2020 was 1.36% and the state’s percent positive for the same period was 0.87%. As of September 30, 2020, Salem’s rolling 14-day average of new daily cases per 100,000 people is 5.2/day and the state’s is 5.7/day.

Additional data about COVID-19 cases in Salem, as well as daily case numbers, are posted in the weekly Local Data Dashboard at, which can also be found by clicking the red “COVID-19 Information” banner on the City home page at”

Additional reading and resources

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