An Update on Dallas County Declaration of Local Disaster for Public Health Emergency regarding COVID-19

City of Dallas Office of Arts and Culture

A Message from our Director:

Dear Dallas Arts Community –

I know that the last few days have been rapidly evolving in the face of COVID-19.  Please know that we have been in close contact with the City of Dallas Office of Emergency Management, and as of March 12, 2020 at 10 PM, there are now clear guidelines from the Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins regarding public assembly. Additionally, the City Manager has issued a directive for staff travel and city-held events.

  1. Most importantly, as of March 13, 2020 at 10 AM, all gatherings of 500 or more people are forbidden. Gatherings of more than 250 are strongly discouraged. Gatherings of more than 10 seniors or other high-risk populations are also strongly discouraged. I know from talking with many of you that this clarity was ultimately helpful. Thank you for many of your thoughtful deliberations, enhanced cleaning protocols and proactive actions over the last few days prior to this declaration.  Importantly, please note that the declaration is only for 7 days (until March 20, 2020), if this changes, you will be informed.
  2. Regarding City of Dallas directives, we are cancelling all department sponsored events until further notice. Staff travel is cancelled until the end of April. For OAC, this means we will not be hosting a public art dedication next Friday, March 20, 2020 in honor of Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan, and we are cancelling our Arts Month press conference scheduled for March 26, 2020.
  3. In reference to cultural happenings throughout the City, please contact the presenting organization directly for details regarding scheduled events, cancellations, and other information. This situation is rapidly evolving and in most cases, the organization best placed to give you information on if something is happening (or not) and if it is rescheduled (and when).
  4. For more information on COVID-19, the CDC guidelines on travel, events, and more, please refer to the City of Dallas COVID website:
  5. Lastly, we know that many of you have questions about your cultural services contracts with the OAC. Please know that we are already in conversation with the City Attorneys regarding our options and guidance for how to navigate the changes and modifications that this situation will necessitate. Ultimately, your contract should be secondary to the public’s and your organizations’ safety, so the edicts listed above should guide your decisions.

Personally, I know that these days have been full of uncertainty and concern for all of us. Please know that OAC is supportive of you all as you navigate the days ahead for yourself, your family and your organizations.

Please take care,

Jennifer H. Scripps



Updated Dallas County Order: March 18, 2020

New Restrictions Press Release: March 16, 2020

Cultural Center Closures from March 14- 20, 2020
(the Cultural Center closure has been extended until further notice)

Funding Program FAQs in Reponse to COVID-19