Open For Business: How some local spots are re-opening shop.

While some Fargo-Moorhead businesses never closed, many businesses are just getting the official “okay” to open their doors. Here’s how some shops are getting creative to serve you while following COVID-19 restart protocols and guidelines.

North Dakota smart restart guidelines for businesses

Restaurants, bars, breweries, distilleries, food trucks can operate while observing industry-specific guidelines related to capacity, table spacing, and sanitation. These guidelines can be found here.

Fitness centers can operate with special attention paid to group class sizes, capacity, and other industry-specific guidelines which can be found here.

Personal service businesses are open and able to serve you, this includes salons, barbershops, spas, and tattoo services, so long as these businesses pay special attention to sanitation and physical distancing protocol and other additional industry-specific guidelines which can be found on the ND Response site.

In addition to industry-specific guidelines all businesses in North Dakota are encouraged to practice the following:

Provide contactless payment systems.

Provide hand sanitizer, soap, and water or effective disinfectant at or near the entrance of the facility and in other appropriate areas for use by the public and employees.

Restrooms normally open to the public shall remain open to the public with heightened hygiene and cleaning standards.

Regularly disinfect high-touch surfaces according to industry-standard operating procedures.

Minnesota guidelines for reopening businesses

Until recently, delivery and curbside services have been one of the only options for most restaurants operating in MN (updated June 5 2020). Now bars, restaurants, gyms, and some other entertainment venues can begin to open for business, with some restrictions (below).

Restaurants can begin offering indoor dining while maintaining social distancing, requiring reservations, and seating no more than 50 percent occupancy.

Indoor social gatherings can take place with 10 people or less; outdoor social gatherings can take place with 25 people or less.

Gyms, personal fitness and yoga studios, and martial arts may open at 25 percent capacity.

Indoor entertainment venues, such as theaters and concert halls, can open at 25 percent capacity.

Recreational indoor entertainment venues, such as bowling alleys, arcades, and museums may open at 25 percent capacity.

Personal services, such as salons, tattoo parlors, and barbershops, may increase occupancy rates to 50 percent while requiring reservations.

Outdoor entertainment venues, such as sporting events, concerts, and theaters may open at 25 percent capacity.

Places of worship can increase occupancy rates to 50 percent.

Plains Art Museum

What to expect

The Plains Art Museum welcomes the public to their re-opened galleries! The museum remains admission free and is currently displaying sculpture assemblage and works by Dyani White Hawk. Re-opening of the Center for Creativity for in-person classes is slated for June 20, 2020. Larger gatherings, lectures, events and talks are still postponed as of June 20, 2020.

Extra precautions

Visitors will see that the Plains Art Museum have added a plexiglass shields at the Visitor Services desk. Hand sanitizer has also been made available. Staff are wearing masks and are monitoring their health appropriately. Guests are required to wear masks and respect physical distancing recommendations.

*Staff will wear masks and perform self-screening wellness checks at the beginning of each shift.

*Staff will frequently sanitize all common use and high touch areas

*Guests are required to wear masks or similar face coverings.

*All visitors are required to respect physical distancing guidelines by staying safely 6 feet or more away from other visitors and staff.

*Staff will monitor and limit the number of guests in the galleries and store with respect to capacity.


What to expect

Stabo is open for business and operating within normal hours. Your one-stop-shop for all things Scandinavian has been in business for more than 40 years and specializes in items such as candy, glassware, sweaters, and more from Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark.

Extra precautions

Shoppers and guests are required to wear masks (provided if you didn’t bring your own), use hand sanitizer, and respect common physical distancing guidelines.

While Stabo packs a lot of merchandise into their space, they are a smaller business, this means they must keep a close eye on how many shoppers are flowing into the door and may have to limit the number of guests in their shop at busier times. The staff are glad to serve you in person once again and note that for guests not wanting to shop in person, curbside pick up and email/web orders are still available.

* Masks required for staff and guests (provided)
* Use of hand sanitizer (provided) is recommended for guests and required of staff
* Physical distancing protocols must be following by guests and staff
* Limiting the number of guests to respect store capacity

Harold’s On Main

What to expect

Owned by musicians, rock stars, and entrepreneurs with local ties and located in Fargo’s sister city, Moorhead, this cozy pub-style bar serves Heggies pizza, tasty cocktails, and $3 Hamms. Harold’s is exactly where you want to hang if you’re looking to feel like a local (even if you aren’t).

Extra precautions

The Harold’s gang has been behind the bar and slinging drinks on the patio for a bit now and they say that operating under Minnesota’s new protocols has been smooth sailing. While smiling behind masks and wearing gloves, staff say guests can safely enjoy gorgeous drinks served in recyclable single-use cups on the spacious patio.

While MN wants to keep you safely spaced outdoors you don’t have to worry, you can gain access to sparkling restrooms through the bar entrance (but for now, its best that you don’t linger too long in the loo taking selfies).

*Staff are required to wear gloves and masks, guests are encouraged to wear masks (not provided)
* Drinks are served in single-use, recyclable glassware to reduce risk of transmission
* Patio tables are spaced out 6′ or more
* Extra steps are taken to limit crowd size with respect to capacity
* Indoor common spaces are only accessible to staff with the exception of restrooms.

Beer & Fish Company

What to expect

Down Roberts Alley in the heart of Downtown Fargo, you’ll find the freshest fish & chips the area has to offer at Beer & Fish Company. A casual seafood restaurant with an urban ambiance, Beer & Fish also features an oyster bar, fine seafood dishes, and a huge selection of tap beers.

Extra precautions

Beer & Fish Company is ready to serve you once again! Keeping patron and staff health the number one priority, Beer & Fish have worked closely with their talented staff to create comfortable clean spaces in their dining room, bar, and patio.

You’ll see servers wearing masks and gloves, sanitizing between tables, and lots of readily accessible sanitizing tools. Diners wanting an airy experience (in parties of 10 or less) can enjoy spaced out tables and fresh air on the gorgeous new patio on Roberts Alley. You can also catch a breeze inside (weather permitting) thanks to the large garage doors.

* The staff say they’re feeling busy and are grateful to be back serving you!
* Staff are required to wear gloves and masks, guests are encouraged to wear masks (not provided)
* Tables are spaced out 6′ or more
* Extra steps are taken to limit crowd or party size with respect to capacity

Puzzled Escape Room

What to expect

A whole lot of mystery, adventure, and fun! Puzzled Escape Room has four themed escape rooms and are working towards eight in the near future. From fortune -telling vampires and weddings to NDSU Bison, their rooms are full of surprises and are well-known for their extra challenge. Search for clues, solve the puzzles and discover the mystery! You have to be fast because you only have 60 minutes to solve it.

Extra Precautions

Puzzled has gone the extra mile to ensure the safety of their employees and patrons. Their new location on south university provides more space for proper social distancing practices. While cleanliness has always been a top priority, even more steps are being taken to sanitize and adhere to state regulations.

* Private bookings only
* Maximum group size of 10 people
* Alternating start times of participating groups
* Host maintains a 6″ distance from participants at all times
* Thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting between each group