Precautions for the Coronavirus and activities
March 19, 2020
In 1347 twelve ships from the Black sea docked in Messina. To the surprise and horror of the residents there most of the sailors were dead. Those men that were still alive were covered in black boils. What would come to be known as the Black Plague started with these twelve ships. This plague would eventually take the lives of over twenty-million people in Europe. Flash forward to 2020 and a little known virus known as Corona would take the world by storm again.
The Corona virus is not new by any means. Ann Anderson of the Pine Bluffs Health Clinic stated that the common cold was a strain of the Corona virus. Anyone who has ever read the back of a can of Lysol would recognize the name, so why the sudden panic over it now? COVID-19 is a new strain of the Corona virus that health care workers haven’t seen yet, so understanding the implications hasn’t fully happened yet. So what do we already know, and what should we be aware of?
Governor Mark Gordon released a statement on March 15, 2020, recommending the closure of Wyoming schools. "This is Wyoming, where we are all neighbors. While social distancing should be a priority for all of us, it should not keep us from helping out our neighbors. I am thinking of our first responders and our healthcare workers on the frontlines who may be without child care. This is a time, if the risk is low, to help one another out” stated Governor Gordon. Superintendent Jon Abrams echoed this sentiment as he issued the order to close our local schools as well. “We here at LCSD#2 are concerned not only for the physical health and safety of our students and our community, we are also thinking of the mental health of our population. As such we have included links on our website, laramie2.org, that are specifically engineered to address those concerns.
While we are now facing what the news and the politicians are calling a “pandemic", a disease that has spread to several other countries across the world. We here in the United States are seeing something that I never thought I would come across. Store shelves are completely empty and store managers are having to ration things like milk and toilet paper. People are hoarding goods, and our elderly and child populations are going without. Here in our little community people are coming from as far as Colorado, Nebraska, and more remote regions of the state to clean out our little stores as well.
If you watch the news or follow social media there is no telling where the stats for this virus are at. Some, like Director of Community Relations and Foundation at the Kimball Health Services Kerry Ferguson reported that “According to Dr. Alexa Harrist, state health officer and state epidemiologist with the Wyoming Department of Health, there have been no reported cases in the state and the current risk of a coronavirus outbreak in Wyoming is still low.” However, there are others that will tout different facts. “Evidence of community spread in Fremont County, two confirmed cases in Sheridan County, and pending tests from the state have lead us to this. [school closures] Wyoming has over 90,000 square miles where schooling is an essential function in each community” State Superintendent Jillian Barlow said. And yet still on social media there are eleven “confirmed” cases in Wyoming. So, when you don’t know what or who to believe, where do you turn to?
Basic Hygiene practices are still your best bet. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) best practices will most likely get you through and help prevent spread. Those practices are:
• Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
• If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
• Cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hand.
• Avoid touching your face, nose, and mouth.
• Avoid contact with other people’s hands. Instead of handshakes try elbow touches.
• If you are not feeling well, please stay home.
• If you have symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, call your doctor.
While you are practicing your best hygiene, here are some of the closures that will affect us here in Pine Bluffs:
Pine Bluffs Youth Activities:
Youth Soccer: We have postponed the start of soccer but hope to resume when school resumes on April 6.
Pine Bluffs Adult Activities:
Wednesday Pick Up Pickleball: Postponed until April 8.
Adult Coed Volleyball: is postponed until April 8. Matches scheduled for March 25 will be played on April 8 and April 1 match will be played on April 15.
Pine Bluffs Senior Activities:
Senior Shape Up: Postponed until April 6.
Monday at the Matinee: Postponed until April 6.
Cheyenne Monday Matinee - Next trip scheduled for April 27.
Pine Bluffs Community Center: Closed to the public until April 6. Please understand that the CC is used for public emergencies and must be ready at a moments notice to facilitate any and all situations that might arise. We would like to encourage outdoor activities as much as possible and are asking people to use the outdoor courts for basketball and pickleball. Those who walk daily in the CC might possibly enjoy walking around City Park with it's nice even sidewalks and fresh air, just remember to bundle up in layers!
Pine Bluffs Fitness Center: Open to all members for use. Please continue to follow our Gym Rules & Guidelines (attached to this email) and pay special attention to wiping down all of the equipment you use including mats, balls and benches. Two sources of hand sanitizer are available, as per usual. Our staff will be sanitizing the Fitness Center everyday, please do your part in cleaning up after yourself.
The Laramie County Library system will be closed from Monday, March 16, 2020, til at least April 3, 2020.
The Ucross Artist Residency will be closed from Monday, March 16, 2020 until Ucross has deemed it safe to re-open.
Jump Into Spring Fling: This event has been cancelled and has not been rescheduled. Home businesses and crafters please know there will be other opportunities in the coming months to showcase your products and creativity to the public, we will keep you informed through our Pine Bluffs Recreation Facebook Page.
National Take a Walk in the Park Day: We have postponed this event that was to take place on Monday, March 30. We are thinking about combining this event with our Arbor Day Celebration on Friday, April 24, stay tuned for more details.
Everything may change between now and April 6, however this is the plan for now. If you have any questions please feel free to call us at 245-3301 or 245-9375.
On a more positive note, there are some community actions that should make getting through this a little easier. LCSD#2 Superintendent Jon Abrams has announced that the schools will continue to give out meals. “We are prepared to provide breakfast and lunch for any kid at the cost that they would normally pay. So for kids on free lunch it would still be free” Abrams stated. Curbside pickup is necessary and you can call to make arrangements for that at 307-245-4070. The senior center is also offering senior lunch meals for curbside pickup. Please call Alisha at 307-245-3816, meals can also be delivered if necessary, again, please call Alisha. And finally, the Texas Trail Market is offering delivery service, to schedule a drop off, please call 307-245-3302.
While the uncertainty of this virus may seem scary, it is essential that people keep their heads. Panicking never fixed anything. If you see a neighbor struggling help them out. A roll of toilet paper can go a long way in helping neighbors stay neighborly.