Dancing With Covid

by jefftkjefftk1 min read10th Oct 20203 comments

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The Society of Stranders puts on a Shag (a regional Swing dance) festival every fall in North Myrtle Beach SC. This year, with the pandemic, the organization made the hard but necessary decision to cancel ( pdf, fb). Unfortunately, one of the venues decided to go ahead with their part of the festival:

The precautions they took were essentially hygiene theater, focused on surfaces while the primary risk by far is people breathing in each others faces:

Routinely cleaning and disinfecting thru out the opening hours and a complete cleaning and disinfection after closing. Hand sanitizing stations have been positioned thru out the club and cafe. Masks are available free of charge for anyone that requests one. A person will be designated as a "floater" that will have the responsibility of observing crowds for anyone that may appear sick and handling related issues including taking temperatures. Capacity levels will be maintained as specified by the Fire Marshall. Security is present during all hours of the event. Large crowds around the bar and other areas of the club will be dispersed.

On masks:

Some people wore them, some didn't. I think the regs require all establishments have a notice stating masks are required but only a few of the establishments enforce it nor are they required to do so.

Looking at pictures posted by a DJ I saw two people wearing masks after skimming ~100+ thumbnails.

Several hundred people attended (the most common estimate I've seen is "500+") and now:

More than 60 Dancers with COVID-19. Some are in hospital. It is life threatening. ... Dancers came from all over because they couldn't get out of hotel contracts etc. and wanted to party & dance with everyone.

I know people miss dancing and want to get back to it, but this event illustrates how easily covid can propagate between dancers. We need to be patient and find other ways to stay in touch with each other while we wait.

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