We are now in Phase 4 of New York Forward, and currently our region’s statistics are favorable. With that, daily and weekly briefings from New York State and Monroe County regarding COVID-19 have eased off, and municipalities will receive updates as deemed necessary. Starting next week, I will follow suit and return to my weekly town news updates including details of reopening milestones at the town government level. I will share COVID-realted news as it impacts Penfield as needed. This doesn’t mean Phase 4 is the end of the process and that we can relax our safety practices.
We have all heard repeatedly from public health officials that we have achieved our region’s favorable status through our collective responsible behaviors of physical distancing and wearing face coverings around others, especially when in public. Seeing coronavirus outbreaks in other states right now is enough to remind us of our fragile status. Even today Governor Cuomo closed down indoor dining in the NYC area because of concerns for compliance and indoor air quality management.
We need to remain committed to our personal safety and the safety of others, especially those who are most vulnerable to the worst COVID-19 can bring to bear. Please continue to wear masks, follow physical distancing guidelines, hand-washing, and sanitizing practices. Compliance with these behaviors lifted us out of our worst coronavirus trends and will help to keep us strong.
While July Fourth celebrations are largely being put on hold this year due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Monroe County Supervisors’ Association announced a joint effort to provide some familiar Independence Day entertainment. The group has sponsored a performance by the Skycoasters, which will air on WXXI on the evening of July 4th.
The Association, comprised of every town in Monroe County, banded together to sponsor and produce the performance. A mainstay at local July Fourth celebrations, and one of the region’s most well-known performing acts, the Skycoasters pre-taped a show at the former Water Street Music Hall in downtown Rochester earlier in June.
The Town of Penfield and Town of Irondequoit’s media departments joined together to film the performance, which WXXI graciously agreed to broadcast. The Town of Brighton, which traditionally hosts the band on July Fourth, helped facilitate the performance.
The concert will air on Saturday, July 4th at 6:00 PM on WXXI-TV Channel 21.3 and Cable 1276 - Rochester’s Public Broadcast Service member television stations. It will also be broadcast on the Town of Penfield’s streaming app, as well as the Town of Irondequoit’s Facebook page.
Penfield TV is also presenting Independence Day programming this weekend with highlights from past parades, festival entertainment, and fireworks. Tune in to Penfield TV this weekend on cable channels 1301 and 1303.
A reminder about the use of fireworks this holiday week...law enforcement agencies are stepping up their response and investigations into reports of uses of fireworks as we head into the July 4th holiday. A special New York State Police task force is targeting fireworks purchases and use now through Sunday evening. Every year, illegal use of fireworks leads to about 10,000 injuries and 19,000 structure fires. Dry grasses and vegetation this year make fires even more likely. Please take care and choose to responsibly celebrate Independence Day.
If you’re up late Saturday night you can try to catch a penumbral lunar eclipse. This type of eclipse occurs when the moon moves through the faint, outer part of Earth's shadow. It’s a subtle effect but one you can see with your own eyes. It begins about 11:00 PM and lasts through 2:00 AM. Here’s a link to details: https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/in/usa/rochester
Do your part: wear a mask, practice physical distancing, help stop the spread to save lives.
Penfield Supervisor R. Anthony (Tony) LaFountain