Wednesday, January 06, 2021
Today is King’s Day, the traditional kickoff to the Mardi Gras season. Like most every other aspect of our lives, COVID-19 has had an impact on this long- standing tradition as well. However, our citizens have turned this twist into an opportunity for creativity and resiliency. Though we will not celebrate Mardi Gras in a traditional way, there are opportunities to celebrate with a display through house float krewes. This clever and festive idea has gained momentum and will no doubt be the start of another tradition built around carnival for years to come.
COVID-19 remains a factor in our everyday lives, and we need to stay vigilant so that we will begin to see through to the other side of this pandemic. The vaccine gives us optimism toward the future, however right now, we have to stay on course. As the Louisiana Department of Health reports a percent positivity rate in St. Tammany Parish above 10% for the second consecutive week, I am again asking citizens to remain strong in their commitment to best prevention practices to slow down the spread of COVID-19.
Despite our “COVID Fatigue”, we all need to continue to stay the course, and continue to exercise personal responsibility as we take every precaution necessary to slow the spread of this virus. It is critically important as we see our percent positivity rate continue to climb, our hospital staffs strained, and our medical resources negatively impacted. We have a mask mandate in Louisiana as well as here in St. Tammany — every person over the age of eight is required to wear a mask in public, including outdoor public spaces. We should all continue to physically distance, avoid large gatherings, and practice personal hygiene including frequent handwashing, and sneezing into your elbow.
If you feel ill, stay home to avoid infecting others. Consider making an appointment to receive the COVID-19 vaccine if you are eligible. We must continue to work together to protect the most vulnerable among us while retaining our medical resources. We are optimistic that these vaccines will help us to move through to the next phase of this pandemic. We need everyone to continue to do their part to ensure that we get there. I ask each one of you to help me in spreading this message as we begin this New Year.
For daily updates on COVID-19 including daily data for St. Tammany from the Louisiana Department of Health, visit www.stpgov.org/covid19. To join a Northshore house float krewe, visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/kreweofhousefloatsnorthshore/ or learn more about the Rollin’ on the 3 Rivers House Floats visit https://coba.memberclicks.net/rot3r-registration#/.
Should you have questions or if I may be of assistance to you in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Michael B. Cooper