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Cherry Blossom Festival prepping to prevent coronavirus spread



MACON, Ga. — We continue to try bringing you the facts on the COVID-19 coronavirus and what you can do to protect yourself and your family.

Even with the number of cases growing, health officials say you’re still less likely to become ill from the virus than from your typical flu. 

One of the groups working to protect Central Georgians is the Macon Cherry Blossom Festival. Organizers tell us they are taking steps to keep germs from spreading during this month’s 10-day long festival.

On March 27th, Central City Park transforms into a carnival, but dozens of rides and thousands of people passing through. 

Jim Drew’s company, Drew Exposition, supplies about 35 rides annually to the Pinkest Party on Earth, and this year, he says they’ll probably be cleaning their rides a little more often, with an alcohol-based sanitizer.

“We’ve always given the rides just a scrub down every couple of days,” says Drew. “But now maybe every so often (we will) wipe down surfaces that people might touch, like lap bars on rides or railings.”

Cherry Blossom President and CEO Stacey Moore says this year they’re also doubling the number of hand washing stations at the festival, and will have sanitizer dispensers at all food court locations.

Michael Moore says he’s been coming to the Cherry Blossom Festival since he was a kid, and the coronavirus wont stop him. (No relation to Stacy Moore)

“I think the hand sanitizer stations are a good idea, regardless, like whether we have this big virus outbreak or not,” says Michael Moore. “But as far as the coronavirus goes, I just don’t think we have too much to worry about right now.”

Stacy Moore says Cherry Blossom Officials are speaking daily with Macon-Bibb Emergency Management, and working hard to follow protocols and guidelines from health officials. Once again health authorities say the risk of catching coronavirus in Georgia is still very low.

Moore also says the Mayor of Kurobe, Japan, which is one of Macon’s sister cities, has postponed his trip to Macon in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. He was scheduled to travel here during the Cherry Blossom Festival.

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