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Lexington area festivals making some modifications to keep people safe

Published: Aug. 9, 2021 at 6:15 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Three popular Lexington festivals that all had to be canceled last year because of COVID will be firing back up over the next three weeks. The first of them will be this weekend when the CRAVE Food and Music Festival is held at Masterson Station.

CRAVE organizers say all of their events will be outdoors as they try to keep people safe this weekend.

Like the Woodland Art Fair the following weekend, they’re encouraging distancing and asking people to wear masks if they’re going to be near others.

Unlike previous years the art fair won’t be shuttling people to the site and they’re reducing the number of vendors.

“We have less space, more spread out. We’re doing some other things to try and eliminate opportunities for people to congregate closely,” Amber Luallen with Lexington Parks and Rec said.

That includes spreading out the food booths.

The week after the art fair, the Railbird Festival comes back to Keeneland. The thousands of fans will be required to either be fully vaccinated, or have a negative COVID test within 72 hours of the event.

Public health experts say while there’s some risk with any gathering, that risk goes up dramatically if you’re unvaccinated.

“I think if you’re not vaccinated you should really look at your risk of disease. If you were to become infected. Personally, if I were unvaccinated I would really think twice about being around people that I know are potentially also unvaccinated,” Dr. Frank Romanelli said.

Dr. Romanelli says even if you are vaccinated, keeping your distance and wearing a mask are still good ideas in crowded areas.

‘Even though you may not end up hospitalized as a vaccinated individual, are you going to carry COVID into your home? And are you going to potentially expose people simply by being infected?” Dr. Romanelli said.

Organizers all say they know things can change as numbers continue to rise, but right now, they all plan to have their events.

“As the weeks are going by we’re very hopeful that we will still be able to make it happen and are taking every precaution to try and make it as safe as an event as possible,” Luallen said.

Another step the organizers at CRAVE are taking to cut down people interacting is moving to an all-digital CRAVE Bucks system. People can buy those credits ahead of time or while they are at the festival and all food and non-alcoholic beverages will be paid for with digital currency.

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