2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Oktoberfest. The City's restaurants, shops, hotels, and amusements will be open and offering Oktoberfest fun for all. Visitors are invited to experience authentic German food, beer and live music during September and October. There will be pop-up celebrations throughout the town, in addition to shopping, golfing, hiking, fishing, and all the other fun activities Helen and the surrounding areas have to offer. While the Helen Chamber of Commerce has deemed it best to postpone their 50th Oktoberfest celebrations at the Festhalle, businesses and restaurants are still open and visitors are welcome to explore the best of Alpine Helen as it shows off its brilliant, autumn colors and cool mountain temperatures. We look forward to celebrating with you. Please visit our Visitor Center's website (helenga.org) for a full list of activities and businesses the City has to offer.
The great City of Helen, GA is coming back to life after the COVID-19 shutdown. The majority of businesses are now open. Like you, we are eagar to get life back to normal, but we still must both follow the directives of the Governor of Georgia and do what we believe is best for our families and community. Because of this, many business owners may have specific conditions they require for people to patronize their business. We ask you to respect the requirements of Governor Kemp, the business owners, and your fellow visitors. Maintain social distancing, and if a shop owner requires you to wear a face mask, please follow their directive. Thank you for loving our City as we do, and please stay safe.
Governor Kemp issued Executive Order 06.29.20.02 on June 29, 2020 regarding COVID-19 and the reopening of our state. (Any information received prior to this time may have changed.) All business owners within the city limits of Helen, GA who have open businesses must be in compliance with this Executive Order. Click here to download: Executive Order 06.29.20.02. Please note that any Executive Order signed by Governor Kemp at a later date will supersede these conditions.
*The statewide “Shelter in Place” expired April 30, 2020 with the exception for those residents and visitors of the State of Georgia who are high risk as defined on Page 6 of this order.
*The Public Health State of Emergency will expire August 11, 2020 at 11:59 p.m.
Effective April 24, 2020, the following businesses were allowed to open: Massage parlors, beauty/barber shops, nail salons, tattoo parlors, and tanning salons. If your business is open, you must be adhering to the strict guidelines in the Executive Order, especially Pages 15-16.
Effective April 27, 2020, all restaurants were allowed to open dining room areas. If your restaurant is open, you must be adhering to the strict guidelines in the Executive Order, especially Pages 8-11, including face coverings for workers when interacting with patrons (Page 8, #7).
Effective May 1, 2020, all hotels/motels and short-term rentals were allowed to recieve guests. If your business is open, you must be adhering to the guidelines in the Executive Order referring to “all businesses”, especially Pages 12-14 where applicable.
Effective May 1, 2020, all other shops and businesses were allowed to open. This includes but is not limited to the following: Retail shops, putt-putt courses, laser tag, horse & carriage rides, escape rooms, wedding chapels, ice cream shops, and any other businesses not mentioned in any other section. If your business is open, you must be adhering to the guidelines in the Executive Order referring to “all businesses”, especially Pages 12-14.
Effective May 14, 2020, tubing companies were allowed to open. If your business is open, you must adhere to the strict guidelines in the Executive Order referring to "all businesses", especially Pages 12-14.
Effective June 12, 2020, coaster rides, go-carts, arcades and water parks may open. If your business is open, you must adhere to the strict guidelines in the Executive Order, especially Pages 20-23.
Currently, churches may continue to remain open, but parishioners should maintain social distancing (Page 5) and wear face mask to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
City parks and pavilions are currently open with the guidelines prohibiting “gatherings” as defined on Page 4.
Masks are strongly recommended for all customers (and specifically required for some). Business owners can require customers to wear mask while in their business.
Again, this information is subject to change based on regulations set forth by President Trump or Governor Kemp. If you have any questions, please call Helen City Hall at 706-878-2733.
*Although certain areas of Executive Order 06.29.20.02 have been highlighted to draw attention to those areas, all guidelines must be followed.