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Santa Cruz County investigating COVID-19 outbreak in Felton

By Phil Gomez

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    FELTON, California (KSBW) — Santa Cruz County is facing a COVID-19 outbreak at the Felton Music Hall.

The Los Angeles-based band Grateful Shred played at the hall nearly two weeks ago, on July 18. Since then several people have tested positive.

The COVID-19 alarm bells rang out when the Los Angeles-based band announced on its Facebook page that they had positive testing band members.

“Nearly all of the band and crew have tested positive and are at home recovering with their families. If you were at any of these events, please get tested,” the band said.

“We only recently learned about this so we are investigating. Our communicable disease unit is reaching out and trying to understand the scope and source of the outbreak,” said Jason Hoppin, Santa Cruz County Communications Manager.

In total, 291 people attended the indoor concert and so far four attendees are confirmed to have contracted COVID-19.

The owner of the venue has instituted changes for all future indoor concert dates.

“We’re going to make sure that point that anybody who’s coming to work is vaccinated or has taken a test in the last 24 hours and we’re going to require masks of all attendees. We really encourage everyone in the community visit the doctor and get vaccinated,” said Thomas Cussins, Felton Music Hall Owner.

The venue has voluntarily closed and plans to reopen on Aug. 5.

“It’s just devastating after a year and a half of being shut down that we could just get open again and have something like this happen,” Cussins said.

The band as well as the Felton Music Venue are advocating for the community to wear masks inside and get vaccinated.

“Especially the vaccinations because among the concert goers’ age that tends to be younger adults that the group we see lower vaccination rates,” Hoppin said.

Many of the other local venues are keeping an eye on how this all plays out.

They’ll use it as a lesson learned from this event to keep people safe from COVID-19.

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