Cooper-Young Festival returns with COVID-19 safety precautions
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Cooper-Young Festival is back, but there are some COVID-19 precautions in place to make sure the area is less crowded.
Some cautious business owners also decided to shut their doors to keep their employees safe.
“The staff was very uncomfortable with letting that many people in the restaurant and being around that many people,” said Alchemy Memphis owner Nick Scott.
He said most of his staff are vaccinated, but it’s just too risky. Instead, he plans on selling drinks to go.
Meanwhile, several Memphians are excited about the festival’s return after it was canceled last year because of COVID-19.
“I know how to stay six feet away, so that’s what I’ll do,” said Debbie Taylor.
Taylor is not vaccinated but is willing to wear a mask and practice social distancing. She plans to be one of the 130,000 people going to enjoy the festivities.
“We enjoy just walking, listening to the music. The music is always great,” said Taylor.
This year, festival organizers decided to get rid of 100 vendors, seven food booths, and one stage to make the area less crowded.
It will also have sanitation stations and handwashing areas.
Scott said this festival usually helps his business financially, but he’d rather be safe than sorry.
“The staff was very uncomfortable with letting that many people in the restaurant and being around that many people,” said Scott.
COVID-19 vaccinations will also be available at the corner of Cooper Street and York Avenue behind Memphis Made Brewing Co.
The first 100 people who get the shot will get a free T-shirt and poster.
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