What Minnesota's 4-week pause means for outdoor activities

People will be able to use state and local trails during Minnesota's four-week pause. (FOX 9)

While many businesses will be impacted by Minnesota's newly announced four-week pause in response to a surge in COVID-19 cases statewide, Governor Tim Walz is encouraging outdoor recreational facilities to remain open.

Social gatherings outside of one household are prohibited in both indoor and outdoor spaces. The order urges outdoor activities must be held within the same household. The new order takes effect at 11:59 p.m. on Friday and is set to expire on Friday, Dec. 18 at 11:59 p.m.

In a release, Walz said the state is at a "breaking point," as hospital beds fill up and case numbers spike across the state. 

"While these actions mean incredible hardship for many, they are the fastest way to recover our economy, keep our kids in school, and get back to the activities we love," Walz said. 


  • Gatherings and activities involving a single household
  • Minnesota state parks, trails, state forests, state recreation areas
  • Local parks, trails, arboretums and gardens
  • Public water accesses
  • Public and private marinas and docks
  • Lake service providers
  • Charter boats and launches - Sites must have a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Public and private golf courses and driving ranges
  • Ski areas, Nordic trails, snow tubing hills, sledding hills and outdoor skating rinks
  • Outdoor shooting ranges and game farms
  • Outdoor recreational equipment rental outlets - Equipment must be sanitized between use and must have clear check-out procedures
  • Dispersed and remote camping sites
  • Public and private campgrounds - Sites must have a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Guided and instructional activities, such as guided fishing or birding - must involve persons from the same household, social distancing applies


  • Gatherings and activities involving multiple households
  • Performances
  • Competitions
  • Organized sports - Youth and adult sports are both impacted. This does not include professional sports or college athletics.
  • Races
  • Rallies
  • Organized group classes
  • Fairs
  • Spectator events