Too early to say whether Omicron surge will impact Baton Rouge Mardi Gras, mayor says
BATON ROUGE - It's too soon to tell whether the statewide surge in Omicron cases will upend Mardi Gras plans in East Baton Rouge, parish officials said during a news conference Tuesday.
Though the city-parish won't commit to a decision on whether the festivities will return, Mayor Sharon Weston Broome said the new wave of cases has already caused the city to push back events planned for Martin Luther King Day to Tuesday.
"As I confer with our medical experts and we get through January, we'll have a better grip on what we can, should do for February, including Mardi Gras," Broome said.
Hours later, some krewes said plans for parades and balls would continue as planned.
"We're full steam ahead until someone puts the wall up in front of us," Robert King with Spanish Town Mardi Gras said. "It's easier to go backwards than it is to go forward, so we're going forward."
King says any decisions on masks or limiting riders will be left up to individual floats, but added organizers would make changes if necessary.
"We're gonna take whatever precautions we have to take," King said. "Whatever we need to do, we're gonna do it."
Additionally, the parish will keep a community testing site open at the Louisiana Leadership Institute for anyone in need of a coronavirus test.
EBR will be committing to a month’s long testing period. Louisiana Leadership Institute on Hooper will remain open as an additional (free) testing site @WBRZ— Bess Casserleigh (@BCasserleigh) January 4, 2022
Louisiana reported more than 31,000 new coronavirus cases over the holiday weekend, with hospitalizations doubling to about 1,100 in a week's time.
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