Blue Ridge, Ga. – Twelve Commission Chairmen from North Georgia counties have joined together and signed a letter asking Governor Brian Kemp to shut down the State Parks.
“It appears that these nonresidents believe our area is a safe haven because of its rural nature. To the contrary, the influx of people into our communities has had a staggering detrimental effect on our resources,” the letter to Kemp read in part.
The letter outlines the resources in our area that have been affected by the out-of-towners looking to seclude themselves, included in these resources are food, dry goods and fuel.
It goes on to inform Kemp that our area is not equipped medically: “Our communities simply do not have enough hospital beds or medical personnel to care for the inflated population.”
Though only serving as a commissioner for a little over three months, Habersham County Commissioner District 5 Tim Stamey felt he needed to be proactive in bringing a solution to this problem: “I am a retired special operator and we don’t sit around talking about things, we get it done.”
Stamey who sits on the Habersham County Board of Health said, “I’m on the County Health Board and talk to Healthcare workers in my county on a daily basis. They are the heros/heroines in all this. This virus does not spread itself on the wind.”
Moccasin Creek State Park, situated just North of Unicoi State park has been “crazy, 4th of July crazy” for the past three weekends according to Stamey, who has witnessed the impact on his county first hand.
Stamey initially contacted Rabun County Chairman Greg James and White County Chairman Travis Turner.
“I started this by just trying to get border counties on board,” Stamey said and added, “Then Chairmen were like well, did you call such and such, I know they feel the same way. It just kept getting bigger and bigger.”
Stamey said that all Commission Chairmen were helpful, on board, and taking the matter seriously: “I talked to most of them several times and for up to an hour each time.”
Stamey, along with the 12 county chairmen and many residents, is hoping that this letter will get the attention of Kemp. The letter in closing states: “On behalf of the many citizens that live in North Georgia who entrust us as County Commissioners to represent their interests, we respectfully ask you to close all of the state parks located in our area immediately.”
Blue Ridge, Ga. – (Updated 3/24/20 2:41 p.m.) Following Governor Brian Kemp’s announcement of the first death in Georgia from Covid-19 on Thursday, March 12, 2020, many Fannin County businesses and agencies are opting to close doors or limit hours to the public.
The hopes of Local, State and National agencies is to slow the spread of the Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) by raising public awareness and limiting public contact with those infected.
The following Fannin County businesses, agencies, and events have been cancelled or postponed in an effort to help “flatten the curve” of the Coronavirus outbreak. A list of Community Resources is also provided at the bottom.
GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC SERVICES
- Blue Ridge City Hall – CLOSED, all business can be conducted at drive-thru. Lobby will remain open for advance voting ONLY through March 20.
- Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association (The Art Center) – CANCELLED all youth based programs March 16-31, all BRMAA sponsored artist guild meetings CANCELLED March 16 – 31, all classes and workshops CANCELLED or POSTPONED March 16 – 31, artist reception for Artist in Residence scheduled for April 3 POSTPONED to April 24, 23rd Annual Writer’s Conference scheduled for April 3-4 POSTPONED
- Blue Ridge City Park and Children’s Playground – CLOSED March 18 – until further notice
- City of Blue Ridge – CANCEL or POSTPONE all events inside city limits until further notice
- City of McCaysville City Hall – Building CLOSED to public, all business can be conducted at drive-thru
- City of McCaysville Municipal Court – CANCELLED March 19 date, court date will be rescheduled
- Fannin County Boys and Girls Club – CLOSED March 16 -27
- Fannin County Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center (Blue Ridge and McCaysville) – CLOSED March 20 – until further notice
- Fannin County Courthouse – LIMITED ACCESS beyond guard line. Citizens will call departments from security check point for access. March 19 – until further notice
- Fannin County Library – CLOSED March 17 – 21
- Fannin County Schools – CLOSED March 16 – 31
- Fannin County Recreation Department – CLOSED March 14 – 29
- Georgia Department of Corrections has suspended inmate visitation statewide.
- Georgia Supreme Court has declared a statewide emergency to halt all non-essential court business
- Magistrate Court Hearings – Suspended for 30 days
- Probate Court Hearings – Suspended for 30 days
- Superior Court Hearings – Suspended for 30 days
- Trial Jurors chosen for March 23 – Suspended, Do Not Report
- City of Morganton City Council Meeting (March 17) – CANCELLED
- Fannin County Board of Commissioners (March 24) – CANCELLED
- Chatuge Regional Hopital – LOCKDOWN March 17 – until further notice. All doors will be locked and remain locked EXCEPT for main entry. NO VISITATIONS.
- Fannin Regional Hospital – NO VISITATIONS March 18 – until further notice. All patients will be screened upon entry and asked to wear a mask if they have fever, respiratory, or other flu-like symptoms. Exceptions to visitation guidelines will be made for end-of-life situations or other special patient needs.
- Union General Hospital – LOCKDOWN March 17 – until further notice. All doors will be locked and remain locked EXCEPT for main entry. NO VISITATIONS.
- Blue Ridge After Hours at INOLA – CANCELLED
- Bowls of Hope Fundraiser (March 28) – CANCELLED
- Good Samaritans of Fannin County 5th Sunday Community Brunch – CANCELLED
- Kiwanis Club of Blue Ridge BINGO (March 19) – CANCELLED
- Leadership Fannin Health Care Program (March 19) – POSTPONED
- St. Patrick’s Day Parade (March 14) – CANCELLED
- Taste of Blue Ridge – Humane Society of Blue Ridge (April 18) – CANCELLED
- Trout Fest and the Back the Brookies Bash – POSTPONED
- Angelina’s Deli – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Black Sheep Restaurant – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Blue Jeans Pizza – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Blue Ridge Mountain Barbeque – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Burra Burra on the River – CLOSED
- Cantaberry – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Carroll’s Barbeque – TAKE OUT AND CURB SERVICE ONLY
- Cucina Rustica – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Das Kaffee Haus – CLOSED
- Dairy Queen Grill and Chill – TAKE OUT ONLY
- El Rio Mexican Restaurant – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Habanero’s Fresh Tex Mex – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Hansen’s Grill – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Harvest On Main – CLOSED
- Katz’s New York Deli – TAKE OUT ONLY
- La Pizzeria at Cucina Rustica – TAKE OUT AND OUTSIDE SEATING
- Masseria – Kitchen & Bar – TAKE OUT AND OUTSIDE SEATING
- Mercier Orchards – Downtown Blue Ridge – CLOSED
- Mystic Mountain Pizza – CLOSED
- Ocoee River Cafe – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Okinawa Steak and Sushi – East Ellijay – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Papa’s Pizza ToGo Blue Ridge – CLOSED
- Pat’s Kountry Kitchen – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Rod’s Rockin Rolls – TAKE OUT VIA DRIVE-UP WINDOW
- Rum Cake Lady Cuban Food Cafe – McCaysville Location – CLOSED
- Blue Ridge Rum Cake Lady Cuban Food Cafe – TAKE OUT ONLY
- South of North – CLOSED
- Southern Charm – CLOSED
- Taste of Amish & General Store – TAKE OUT ONLY
- The Blue Coyote – CLOSED
- The Copper Grill – TAKE OUT ONLY
- The Sweet Shoppe of the South – TAKE OUT ONLY
- The Village Restaurant – CLOSED
- Tin Loong & The Dragon Tail Lounge – CLOSED
- Yellowbird Coffee Shop – CLOSED
- Zaxby’s – TAKE OUT ONLY
- Aska Lodge Bed & Breakfast – CLOSED March 18 – April 2
- Blue Ridge Cellars – CLOSED March 22 – April 4th
- Blue Ridge Community Theater – CLOSED March 17 – 31, for a full list of cancelled or postponed events please visit the BRCT Facebook page
- Blue Ridge Framing Company – BY APPOINTMENT ONLY
- Blue Ridge Scenic Railway – CLOSED March 16 – 31
- Copperhill Brewery – CLOSED March 18 – March 31, will fill to go orders Mon. – Sat. 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.
- Doggie Dips and Doos Grooming – CLOSED March 14 – 30
- The Folk Apothic – CLOSED March 14 until further notice, online store still OPEN
- Grump Old Men Brewing – TAPROOM CLOSED March 17 (@ 5p.m.) – March 31, will remain OPEN for carryout beer and merchandise purchases
- Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino and Hotel – CLOSED March 18 – April 1
- Jumping Mouse Beads – CLOSED March 22 – April 1
- Mailbox Co. – CLOSED, will accept overnight/express packages in bin located outside, pick up for these items will be on weekdays only
- Mercier Orchards (Downtown and Farm) – CLOSED March 16 – until further notice
- Mountain Thyme Bath & Body – CLOSED March 16 – 20, will reassess on March 21
- Qinti – CLOSED March 19 – until further notice
- Tri-State EMC – LOBBY CLOSED March 19 – until further notice, business can be conducted at drive-thru
- Walmart – Effective March 19, store hours limited, OPEN 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily, From March 24 – April 28 Walmart will host an hour-long senior shopping event every Tuesday for customers aged 60 and older (6 a.m. – 7 a.m.)
- The Wellness Institute of North Georgia – CANCELLED all events until March 28
- The Fannin County School System, along with several area organizations, will be delivering meals to area locations across the county for those students in need. You can visit their website www.fannin.k12.ga.us for updated information.
- El Rio Mexican Restaurant is offering free kids meals (off the kids menu) to all shool age children Mon. – Fri.
- Fannin’s Helping Hands is offering a number of services, including delivery to the elderly members of the community. You can find out how to utilize these resources or sign up to volunteer by visiting their Facebook page or following this link : Fannin’s Helping Hands
- Carroll’s Barbeque is offering a hot meal for school aged children in need (during restaurant hours). Also accepting food donations to be distributed to the community.
- Twisted Tomato offering two slices of cheese or pepperoni pizza to school aged children and the elderly, Mon. – Fri. 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.
- Burra Burra on the River is offering a slider burger and snack size fry to school aged children and the elderly, Mon. – Fri. 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.
- Southern Drug Company offering same day delivery of food and medicine to customers during regular business hours
- Bumblebee’s Cafe is offering free pancakes for children until school is able to resume.
- Blue Ridge Pharmacy will deliver essential over the counter products, as well as prescription medications, to senior citizens. This delivery service is free. You can call 706-632-2244.
- Fannin County Family Connections drive thru for food boxes will be open during regular pantry hours Mon. – Thur. 10a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE COVID-19
If you think you may have contracted SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19 please call your primary healthcare provider first. Your doctor will advise you as to whether you need to come in for testing. Do visit an Emergency Room if you feel that you have life threatening symptoms. It is advised to call hospitals or doctor’s offices ahead of time to let them know that you are on your way. This allows time for staff to prepare for your arrival and minimize the possibility of contact with patients in high risk categories.
If you have a business, event, or resource that needs to be added to the list please email Natalie@fetchyournews.com .