Quigley Canyon Sledding

Families enjoyed sledding in Quigley Canyon over the weekend as more snow rolled into the valley last weekend. The forecast is calling for another small system to deliver snow overnight Wednesday into Thursday morning, too. 

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare reported 1,433 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 statewide on Wednesday, raising the total to 125,452. Of those, health officials continue to monitor an estimated 75,469 active cases.

The state counted another 17 coronavirus-related deaths today, raising the Idaho death toll to 1,231.

Blaine County gained five more cases today, according to the state, raising local totals to 1,384 confirmed and 115 probable. Based on the most recent data available, the South Central Public Health District is monitoring 242 active cases in Blaine County.

So far, 119 doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered in the state.

Read on for more about the COVID-19 vaccine in Idaho, Hailey’s plans to distribute CARES money, new low-visibility landing procedures at Friedman and more top news from Wednesday, Dec. 16.

• As we reported last night, the first shipments of the two-dose COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by Pfizer have arrived in Idaho. The state has received an initial allotment of 13,650 doses, 975 of which have been allocated to the South Central Public Health District, which covers eight counties, including Blaine. Our reporter Greg Foley elaborates upon last night’s reporting, taking a deeper look at the vaccine and how officials plan to distribute it.

• The city of Hailey plans to start distributing up to $200,000 to small businesses using federal CARES Act relief funds. Hailey businesses hoping to receive financial support from the city have until this Friday to apply.

• The two final candidates for the vacant Blaine County School District superintendent position have both issued statements ahead of their upcoming visits to the area. James Foudy, current superintendent of the McCall-Donnelly School District in McCall, and Heather Sanchez, executive director of schools for the Bellevue School District in Washington, both took the opportunity to express their dedication to education.

• Sunday’s snowstorm gave Friedman Memorial Airport its first opportunity to use its new predetermined maneuvers allowing pilots to land in low-visibility conditions. Everything went smoothly, meaning passengers can look forward to fewer diversions this winter.

• Sen. Jim Risch has named local restaurant La Cabañita the Idaho Small Business of the Month. Incidentally, the restaurant was voted “Best Mexican Restaurant” by the readers of the Idaho Mountain Express in this year’s Best of the Valley survey.

“Since its founding, La Cabañita has become a Ketchum mainstay,” Risch said. “It is the gold standard for Latin-American cuisine in Idaho and has earned every bit of business it has received.”

For more local and regional news, pick up a copy of today’s Idaho Mountain Express, or visit mtexpress.com at any time.

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