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Medical professionals recommend masking in large crowds

CINCINNATI — Ohio’s COVID-19 case count as of Friday is more than double what it was three weeks ago. The rise in numbers has reignited the push to get more people vaccinated.

Despite the increase, crowds of people are expected to pack events like the Kroger Wellness Experience at The Banks this weekend.

“It’s been a long time since I’ve been out, and this is something that actually relates to me,” Ella Scott said.

Festivals, concerts and sporting events are in full swing this weekend in the Tri-State, but all the public person-to-person interactions have health officials hoping people are staying safe.

“If you are outdoors on top of each other, to the point where you could actually smell someone smoking a cigarette or perhaps someone’s body odor, that’s really too close,” Ohio Health infectious disease physician Dr. Joe Gastaldo said.

Wear a mask in crowds, he said. Even when you’re outside.

“I’ve been vaccinated, but I think it’s a good precaution,” Jack Reasner said. “And, honestly, I think I look better with my mask on.”

To help get more people protected against COVID-19, Kroger opened up a vaccine clinic at this weekend’s event.

Setup for the Black Family Reunion is underway at Sawyer Point. Organizers said four different health partners will be hosting vaccine clinics, and masks and hand sanitizer will be passed out.

“We know that you are more than less likely to get COVID and die from it if you have been vaccinated, so absolutely we’re sharing with people to get vaccinated,” Black Family Reunion organizer Tracey Artis said.

Local venues like ICON Music Center and Riverbend will soon require you to show proof of your vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to attend concerts.




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