COVID variants surging in states likely to make it to CWS games in Omaha
May 04, 2021
OMAHA, Neb. (FOX 42 KPTM) — OMAHA, Neb. (FOX42KPTM) - After missing out on the 2020 College World Series, Jenny Peters is grateful to have something to plan for this year. She's in the process of getting the Baseball Village organized.
"We're happy to have baseball again. It has been a long time coming."
Peters says the Baseball Village will look different compared to years past. For one, arrangements will be made for more open space so physical distancing guidelines can be respected.
"For example, take a vendor tent and put maybe a throwing station in between that and another tent as opposed to having three tents right in a row."
The planning comes as Douglas County Health Director Dr. Adi Pour warns variants to COVID-19 will present a challenge. She says out-of-state visitors could potentially bring them here.
Michigan, for example, has experienced variant surges (2,200+ variant cases confirmed) within the past few weeks, according to the Centers for Disease Control. A similar story is also playing out in Tennessee (800+ variant cases confirmed) and in Florida (3,500+ variant cases confirmed). All three states have drawn plenty of guests to Omaha in just the last two to three years alone. Florida has especially gotten the attention of Dr. Pour.
"When we saw the first Brazilian variants, there were two individuals who came in and traveled in from Florida."
Infectious disease experts say younger people are driving more recent spikes in cases.
As for Peters, part of her plan is to work with College World Series, Inc. among other groups. Her expectation is for a safe environment brought on by accountability and responsibility.
"That we're cautious and create a safe and healthy event for everybody."
Peters said Tuesday the yearly Flying Flags for Charity event will look much different this year. It's going to have a more digital feel to it. She says it's being done that way out of respect for the health and safety of families.
Peters also said Tuesday she'll be keeping touch with the Douglas County Health Department and consult with leaders there.