ONEONTA – As first reports of three cases of COVID-19 in the City of Oneonta surfaced this evening, Common Council unanimously approved two measures to shelter workers who may need quarantine and transfer funds for COVID-19 expenditures.
“The good news is that it’s a small number, thanks to the selfless way they are quarantining themselves,” said Mayor Gary Herzig. “The bad news is that we know that more people are contagious, but may have no symptoms, and that there are not enough tests. We’re doing great, but we cannot ease up.”
At the Cooperstown Farmer’s Market, Sherrie Kingsley, Otsego 2000 Executive Director Ellen Pope and Deb Dalton wear protective masks as they fill 40 orders for curbside pick-ups. “People order online and we follow the list going from vendor to vendor,” explained board member Robert Nelson, who was at the door making sure customers washed their hands before entering. “The vendors have been really prepared and organized, numbering the bags and making sure everything is organized. With this many orders, we kept this many people out of the market and kept that many safe. We hope this is successful.” Signs ask patrons to adhere to 6-foot social distancing and not to touch any of the produce; the sellers bag it themselves. At right, Seth Friedman, Greentopia Farm, Davenport, was offering some of his own masks (which he uses for harvesting mushrooms) to customers. “When you pick mushrooms you have to wear gloves and masks because you don’t want to be exposed too much to their spores,” he said. “So these safety measures are normal for me.” The markets, in Pioneer Alley, is open until 2 p.m. today (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
COOPERSTOWN – The Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmers’ Museum will not open April 1, according to Todd Kenyon, director of marketing for the museums.
At the Fenimore, the exhibits “The World of Jan Brett,” “Blue Gardens: Photographs by Gross and Daley,” “Prismatic Beauty: American People and American Art,” “Elegant Line/Powerful Shape: Elements of Native American Art,” and “Hamilton’s Final Act: Enemies and Allies” were scheduled to open the 2020 season, but both museums will remain closed, with all scheduled activities cancelled, until further notice.
FLY CREEK – With many of her fellow Fly Creek United Methodist Church quilters stuck inside under COVID-19 precautions, Pastor Sharon Rankins-Burd has found a way to keep sewing – and help the community.
“We became aware that there was a need at Bassett Hospital for masks,” she said. “Someone found a pattern online, and apparently, a lot of people are making these.”
While the masks are not full protection against COVID-19, they will help health care workers at Bassett reduce the risk.
BLOOD DRIVE – Noon – 5 p.m. Due to unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations there is a major shortage of blood for hospitals. Healthy individuals are invited to donate life saving blood. Donate by APPOINTMENT ONLY! Foothills Performing Arts Center, Oneonta. www.foothillspac.org
Farmers’ Markets have been classified as “essential businesses”, and are permitted to continue under the governor’s “New York State On PAUSE” program:
ONEONTA FARMERS MARKET – 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. Market runs indoors at Main St. Garage Walkway during winter, outdoors on Muller Plaza during summer. For the health of the community, patrons are asked to limit hand-to-hand contact, frequently wash/sanitize hands. Customers can also reach out to vendors for pre-order & market pick-up. Main St, Oneonta. Info, www.oneontafarmersmarket.com
BIRD ATLAS – 7:30 p.m. Learn about history, importance of the third Breeding Bird Atlas with project coordinator Julie Hart and Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society. Elm Park United Methodist Church, 401 Chestnut St., Oneonta. In process of shifting to a virtual event people will be able to participate in from home computers. Follow the link for updates. 607-397-3815 or visit www.facebook.com/DelawareOtsegoAudubonSociety/
COOPERSTOWN – Bassett Healthcare has suspended visitations to all hospital and long-term care visitors at Bassett, Fox Hospital and all other hospitals in the network, as well as Fox Nursing Home.
Additionally, access to clinic buildings and outpatient services areas in all Bassett Healthcare Network facilities, including clinic buildings and outpatient services, is being limited to only patients with scheduled appointments or required business, such as prescription pickup.
COOPERSTOWN – The annual Hall of Fame Classic weekend at the Baseball Hall of Fame has been cancelled, Jon Shestakofsky, Communications VP, announced moments ago.
“This precautionary measure is being implemented in accordance with recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and government officials to limit opportunities for large gatherings and the further spread of the COVID-19 virus,”Shestakofsky wrote in a statement.
The first Sunday after the National Emergency on coronavirus declared by President Trump Friday afternoon, Otsego County churches have made a variety of decisions on how to go forward, or not to go forward, guided by concern of congregants’ health, particularly elderly one.
The variety is such that congregants should check with their churches in advance of Sunday services.
At one end is the Lutheran Church, where Lutheran Bishop John Macholz of the Upstate New York Synod announced a “cessation of ‘in person’ worship” from tomorrow through March 31, when the issue will be reassessed. That affects the Church of the Atonement, Oneonta; Evangelical Lutheran, Hartwick Seminary, and St. Matthew’s, Laurens.
ONEONTA – To implement “social distancing” in the fight against spreading coronavirus, Mayor Gary Herzig announced this evening that Common Council meetings will be streamed on Facebook Live.
“The public is encouraged to attend remotely,” said Mayor Gary Herzig in a statement. “The severity of this pandemic can only be minimized by all communities acting locally to mitigate the spread of this virus.
“Here in the City of Oneonta, we owe it to ourselves, our neighbors and our fellow New Yorkers to voluntarily implement social distancing measures in all group activities,” he said.