Jun 26, 2020

A Covid Petri Dish

Bloomsburg Fair
Bloomsburg, PA
I've been going to the Bloomsburg Fair since before I could walk.  It's one of my favorite places in the world to go.  It's not an exaggeration to say that I look forward to the Fair more than Christmas or my birthday or just about anything else in the year, with the possible exception of the Phillies home opener at Citizens Bank Park.  It's one of the few places where I can go and truly escape; where I can walk around, eat, drink, see the animals, and enjoy what usually ends up being the last warm and sunny days of the year.

Photo Source: Larry Deklinski (2013) Times Shamrock

That being said, I can't believe that they're going ahead with the scheduled opening of the 2020 Bloomsburg Fair in three months.  Anyone who has been there will tell you that it is an absolute sea of people in very close proximity.  Picture a crowded concert mosh pit moving in a massive herd through aisles of shops and vendors and in and out of buildings.  If you wanted an example of the polar opposite of social distancing, you would have to look long and hard to find a better example than the Bloomsburg Fair.

Bloomsburg Fair attendance figures - source: BloomsburgFair.com

The Fair typically draws an attendance of over 400,000 per year.  People come from across Pennsylvania and neighboring states will be walking into a Covid-19 petri dish over a nine day span.  They will then spread out across the region to return to their homes, schools and workplaces - all in a time frame that coincides with the beginning of the school year and Fall temperatures that nearly all of the experts predict will be the start of a second wave of the virus (assuming the first wave actually comes to a stop at some point).  Furthermore, Bloomsburg Fairground officials have made it clear on their social media platforms that they do not intend to require protective masks for vendors or visitors to the Fair.

Holding this event in a country that has become the epicenter of an ongoing global pandemic is MADNESS.

Best of luck to you all.  I will not be attending this year.