Fourth of July at Sun Valley 2020

COVID-19 certainly modified Fourth of July festivities, but the pandemic did not halt them altogether. Throughout the valley, residents and visitors celebrated on Saturday, including with a fireworks display at Sun Valley, pictured.

Idaho’s statewide total COVID-19 case count surpassed 8,000 today, meaning that since Friday, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare counted 1,063 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19.

The South Central Public Health District confirmed three more cases of coronavirus in Blaine County over the weekend, raising the local total to 530 confirmed and 12 probable. Of those cases, 12 confirmed and one probable patient are currently being monitored by health officials. Twin Falls presently has 592 confirmed and 98 probable cases, of which 120 confirmed and six probable are being monitored.

As statewide cases continue to rise and Fourth of July holiday traffic tapers off, the Ketchum City Council passes an emergency health order. Plus, mountain lions are out on the prowl again. Here are the top news stories from Monday, July 6.

• The Ketchum City Council passed an emergency health order Monday evening mandating that face masks must be worn in certain public settings. Ketchum’s move is similar to Hailey’s--and, unlike the resolutions passed by Sun Valley and Bellevue last week, this order can be legally enforced and those who do not abide by it may be subject to penalties. 

This is a developing story. Full details on the order, including exact terms, requirements, exceptions and penalties, will be published tomorrow.

• A mountain lion was spotted in Ketchum’s dog park over the weekend. The Department of Fish and Game said lion activity is normal and not necessarily anything to worry about, but urged pet owners to take necessary precautions.

Check the backyard before putting cats and dogs out, keep dogs on leashes and keep in mind that mountain lions may be active in the area year round, not just in the winter.

• The Hailey Farmers Market will hold its grand opening this Thursday, July 9. The market is starting up a little later than usual—and later than its Ketchum counterpart—because it had to adjust to new health considerations, including relocating to Roberta McKercher Park to accommodate easier social distancing.

• On another positive note, the Sun Valley Music Festival announced its complete 2020 season lineup last week. The restructured festival will occur entirely online for the first time, though concerts may be streamed to the big screen on the lawn of the Sun Valley Pavilion depending on what the health situation is like later this month and in August.

The free virtual performance series includes guest artists Audra McDonald, Time for Three, the 442s and many more.

For more local and regional news, look for the latest issue of the Idaho Mountain Express, or check mtexpress.com at any time.

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