Tri-State summer celebrations continue amid COVID-19 spike

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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – The Kentucky Health Department revised the zone designations for two of the Tri-State’s larger counties. It now has Henderson and Daviess counties all in the red zone along with Hancock, Hopkins, Muhlenberg and Webster counties. Red zone counties mean they are reporting 25 or more COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people on a daily basis.

In Daviess County alone, 110 new positive COVID-19 cases were confirmed in the last three days by the Green River District Health Department. With many of our western Kentucky counties now in the commonwealth’s red zone, health officials are worrying about large gatherings like the one at Friday After 5.

“I have just heard a lot of the young people are being infected by the new strand going around,” said Kourtney Osborne.

“We need a doctor and his advice is to get your shots and all you can do is get your shots and once you’ve done that, fellowship, and care about one another,” stated Glen Hendrix.

Friday After 5 organizers say they plan to have more signs encouraging physical distancing and additional safety protocol in place.

“We have gone back to early days when we first opened so if you’re walking into a venue like Riverpark Center they are going to have hand sanitation stations out,” said Francine Marseille, Friday After 5 organizer.

With nearly all of our western Kentucky counties in the red zone, there’s growing concern among of another COVID-19 surge. Kentucky health officials say postponing large public events is one of seven updated recommendations for county’s in the red. Other recommendations include increasing vaccination efforts, encouraging masking, and physical distancing

“If we have to slow a couple of things down we have to slow a couple of things down and again we are going to continue to move forward and ask people to mask,” said Marseille.

In Indiana, county fairs are well underway including in Warrick County.

“I did read recently there has been a rise in COVID cases, so it’s a little concerning, but I have been vaccinated, so not as concerned as I have been before about COVID,” explained Lori Hamilton.

Gibson County’s fair wrapped up Saturday. Fair organizers say they had a low turnout at their vaccination clinic set up at the fair. The Vanderburgh County fair is scheduled to start on Monday. A vaccine clinic will be set up there too.

Health experts say the biggest uptick in new positive cases come from people who are not vaccinated.

Health officials say the Delta variant and those unvaccinated individuals are driving case numbers higher as we head into another weekend.

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