Public facilities around Nome will remain closed until at least April 30th while the city and state monitor the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic around Alaska.
Originally, the Nome City Council planned to revisit their March 11th decision in their next regular meeting and potentially open the buildings today but on Thursday (March 26th), the City announced their decision to extend the closure. The affected facilities include the Richard Foster building, which houses the library and cultural center, Old St. Joe’s, the visitor’s center, and the Nome Mini Convention Center.
The recreation center will also remain closed to the public and currently serves as the point of operation for the both the Day Shelter and the NEST. City Hall remains open to the public but with reduced hours. They are now open Monday through Friday from 9AM to 3PM, except for today which is a state holiday: Seward’s Day.
Over the weekend, Governor Mike Dunleavy issued a statewide shelter in-place order and social distancing order that prohibits meetings of groups larger than ten people. That order is in effect until at least April 11th.
There are currently 114 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Alaska but there have been no cases confirmed in Western Alaska.
UPDATE: The City of Nome had originally announced the facility closures would be extended through April 15th, as shown by their released PSA. However, that date has now been updated to April 30th.
Image at top: Nome’s museum and library is housed inside of this facility, the Richard Foster Building. Photo: Emily Russell/KNOM.