Coronavirus

Another person at Lake of the Ozarks on Memorial Day weekend tests positive for COVID-19

(CNN) — Another person has tested positive for coronavirus after visiting the Lake of the Ozarks over Memorial Day weekend in Missouri, health officials said Friday.

A Kansas resident was identified as being at the Lake of the Ozarks on Memorial Day weekend, said Elizabeth Holzschuh, an epidemiologist with the Johnson County, Kansas, Department of Health and Environment.

The latest case comes weeks about two weeks after an initial person, a resident of Boone County, Missouri, tested positive for the virus and was possibly infectious over the holiday weekend.

“As the stay at home orders have decreased we have started seeing additional individuals in the younger age groups” including people in their 20s and 30s becoming infected, Holzschuh said.

Johnson County, a suburb of Kansas City, currently has 992 cases of COVID-19.

The newly identified person visited the same bar as the Boone County resident, who visited multiple bars on May 24 and 25, according to the Camden County Health Department.

Video from that weekend shows partiers crowded together in a pool at Backwater Jacks Bar and Grill in Osage Beach, according to Scott Pasmore, an anchor for CNN affiliate KTVK, who shot the footage.

“With the influx of 700,000+ visitors to the Lake of the Ozarks area on a holiday weekend, it was inevitable that we would experience carriers of the virus, whether symptomatic or asymptomatic,” Backwater Jacks said in a May 30 statement posted on its Facebook page. “This will continue throughout our season. Unfortunately, the virus will be part of our lives for the unseen future.”

The bar’s statement then says it encourages those “who are easily compromised, showing symptoms, have knowingly been in contact with a confirmed case or highly at risk, to please stay home.” Backwater Jacks is already promoting its July 4 pool party event “Zero Ducks Given Pool Party.” This was also the name of the Memorial Day Weekend event.

“However, we believe each of our customers have the freedom to choose whether they want to visit Backwater Jacks or not,” the statement read.

Timeline of infected person’s movements

Camden County health officials urged those who were in the area to monitor for symptoms. They released a timeline of the original infected person’s movements, including a list of the bars the person visited:

Saturday, May 23

Backwater Jacks: between approximately 1-5 p.m.

Shady Gators and Lazy Gators Pool: 5:40-9 p.m.

Backwater Jacks: 9:40-10 p.m.

Sunday, May 24

Buffalo Wild Wings: 1-2 p.m.

Shady Gators: around 2:30 p.m. until around 6:30-7 p.m.

Restaurants reopen, but social distancing is a must

As part of Missouri’s reopening plan announced in May, state officials said restaurants may offer dining-in services but must adhere to social distancing and other precautionary public health measures. The gathering that weekend violated social distancing measures intended to limit the spread of COVID-19. Backwater Jacks maintains that no laws were broken.

Medical staff was hired for the Memorial Day weekend event, according to the bar, and anyone with a temperature of above 100.4 was denied access, according to the bar. Hand sanitizer was provided.

Coronavirus is not likely to spread in water, the CDC says, but it does spread through people in close proximity. Staying at least 6 feet from others is particularly important at pools or beaches because masks are impractical in water.

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