Memorial Day will be quiet for many thanks to virus

Posted 5/22/20

Garbage schedules and closings are being announced for Memorial Day, although the COVID-19 pandemic will likely mean a quiet holiday for many people.The Walker County Courthouse and county offices …

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Memorial Day will be quiet for many thanks to virus


Garbage schedules and closings are being announced for Memorial Day, although the COVID-19 pandemic will likely mean a quiet holiday for many people.

The Walker County Courthouse and county offices are expected to be closed Monday, as well as city halls in the area. Walker County residential service will not be affected, although the landfill and solid waste office will be closed for both Memorial Day and for Monday, June 1, which is a state holiday, Jefferson Davis' Birthday. 

Officials with the city of Jasper said garbage service would be delayed by one day the rest of the week. Carbon Hill will delay Monday garbage service until Thursday; no garbage truck will be set out Monday. The Carbon Hill City Council will not meet Monday due to the holiday, with the next meeting date set for June 8. 

Garbage schedules for Parrish, Sumiton and Dora will not be affected by the holiday. 

Mail will not be delivered on Monday, and counter service at U.S. post offices will be closed. Financial institutions and markets are expected to be closed. 

As businesses have slowly been reopened in the wake of the pandemic, a number of stores are expected to hold traditional Memorial Day sales over the weekend - although with recommendations or restrictions involving social distancing and masks. Some restaurants and grocery stores may also have to deal with food supply issues. 

The pandemic is postponing traditional Memorial Day water attractions in the area. Carbon Hill has delayed reopening its swimming pool until it gets more direction from the state, while its splash pad is in disrepair from the Easter tornado. Parrish is not planning to open its splash pad soon. 

In spite of the coronavirus, some are expected to observe this as the traditional start of summer and take pleasure trips to areas like Smith Lake and the Gulf Coast. Phased reopenings have been seen in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge - with large crowds walking the streets of Gatlinburg. However, Walt Disney World has only had a partial reopening of a shopping area at its resort. Six Flags Over Georgia's web site indicates it is closed for now due to COVID-19 and "will reopen as soon as it is safe to do so." 

The lifting of health restrictions on entertainment venues may change the situation at a number of sites, depending on how quickly they wish to react. A number of businesses were slow to open after the last lifting of state restrictions, including restaurants. 

Releases from the state Thursday seemed to indicate among those that could open, albeit with restrictions, are theaters, bowling alleys, billards and pool halls, bingo halls, casinos, arcades, mini golf, driving ranges, skating rinks, aquariums, and natural tourist attractions. 

It is also unclear what if any restrictions could change in Jefferson County, which has its own health restrictions. Jefferson County has had one of the highest number of cases of the virus in the state. 

Before the order, only the park grounds at Vulcan in Birmingham are open, as the observation tower and museum are closed. The Birmingham Zoo has been closed. The Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville noted on its website it tentatively plans to reopen on May 29, with Space Camp resuming June 28. Railroad Park in Birmingham, which is being patrolled, has been open only for "moving in or through the park for exercise purposes only," without group activity and with all facilities closed. 

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the American Village in Montevallo is closed until further notice. All activities there are canceled, incluidng public programming and activities for Memorial Day and Independence Day. 

The website to the Bankhead National Forest said public access to developed campgrounds, day use areas, and dispersed recreation area restrooms throughout Alabama’s Bankhead, Conecuh, Talladega and Tuskegee National Forests is temporarily suspended indefinitely for the health and safety of visitors and staff. Temporarily closed at Bankhead are the Houston Day Use Area, Brushy Lake Campground, Sipsey Trailhead (restroom only), Natural Bridge Day Use Area, Pine Torch Horse Trailhead (restroom only), Flint Creek Multiple Use Trailhead, Brushy Lake Day Use, McDougal Hunt Camp (restroom only), Hurricane Creek Shooting Range and Owl Creek (restroom only). 

Blue Moon Drive-In will be open Friday through Sunday in Gu-Win with 50 percent capacity, online snack orders and delivery and restrooms available by request. "Spies in Disguise," "Trolls World Tour," "Bloodshot," and "Fantasy Island" will be the featured attractions. 

The Alabama Jubilee Hot Air Balloon Classic will be held in the Decatur area on Saturday at 6:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. However, balloons will not be glowed, people are asked not to approach the balloons, and tethered rides will not be offered. No vendor, car, tractor or arts and craft events will be held, and no event swill occur at Point Mallard. 

The Alabama Department of Transportation said restrooms will remain open in rest areas and Alabama Welcome Centers across the state, with extra efforts to clean those facilities.