NOLA Mayor: COVID Spike Could Affect Fall Festivals, Saints Games
For everyone who was waiting patiently for things to get back to "normal" after a year of shutdowns, it's disheartening that numbers are up in Louisiana for COVID-19 cases. And with so many events moved from spring to fall in New Orleans, Mayor LaToya Cantrell is cautiously watching the situation.
The French Quarter Festival, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, and of course, the upcoming NFL season for the Saints are all concerns for the mayor because of the massive crowds that these events attract. The two popular festivals were moved to the fall in hopes that coronavirus cases would be down due to the availability of the vaccine, but now they are spiking back up at an alarming rate. Mayor Cantrell told WWL TV that the festivals will have to abide by the city’s public health guidelines and “This is a critical and very serious time in our city as we were pivoting to getting back to our festivals and opening up in ways we have been waiting for, for over a year and a half. It’s very concerning where we are. It really is. Unfortunately, we’re having to collaborate and make some tough decisions that are coming before us."
Cantrell says the city will work in conjunction with the two huge festivals to make sure citizens who want to attend will be safe. And officials with the New Orleans Saints are saying they are also monitoring the COVID situation and will be working closely with city officials and their own health experts ahead of the start of the season at the newly named Caesars Superdome
The Saints will hold their first preseason game on Aug. 23, against the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the mayor tells WWL TV “All things are on the table. I will be working with and talking with leadership affiliated with the Saints so that we make the best decision for public health and public health outcomes for our city and really for our state.” It's a possibility that attendance could be affected if cases continue to surge, but Cantrell is hoping to keep the spirit of Saint's game day alive for the upcoming season. Read more from Mayor Cantrell at WWL.
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