It’s been a month since I’ve begun this new adventure of writing for The Spirit of Jefferson.

The transition from writing for a daily publication to a weekly one has been smooth. It was an easy transition. When I first started out in the business, I was writing for a weekly publication.

I’m still learning the ins and outs of the athletic programs at Jefferson and Washington high schools. The coaches, athletes, school administrators and parents have been very friendly and cooperative.

I thank you for that. Give yourselves an “A.”

I’ve been observing some of the fall sports teams at both schools, trying to learn their various styles of play. It’s a work in progress for me.

All of this is being done under very unusual circumstances.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been the center of attention for all walks of life since last March, when life as we know it took a sharp turn. It’s going to be a while before things take another sharp turn toward normalcy.

What I’ve been observing, from my perch either in the pressbox or the bleachers, is how the spectators are handling this situation. Numerous restrictions are in place.

The most noticeable restriction is how spectators are physically (I don’t like the term social) distancing themselves. Attendance is limited to family members, who sit as a group at sporting events.

Most recently, Jefferson County Schools have been given a “green” status on the COVID-19 map, meaning a few more restrictions have been lifted. For example, parents of band members are permitted in the bleachers, with proper physical distancing in place.

People are wearing masks when physical distancing is not possible. At the beginning of the season, a few of us had to be reminded to keep those masks on and keep the proper distance.

The fans are getting the message. Because of doing the right thing, the spread of COVID-19 has been reduced on a local level.

Give yourselves an “A” for that.

But let’s not forget many of the other counties across the Mountain State that are not as fortunate. As of last Saturday, Berkeley County backtracked from a green to a gold status, meaning its infection “positivity rate” hit 4.9 percent.

This has triggered restrictions on extracurricular activities. They are permitted against in-county opponents, or other gold-status counties.

This doesn’t mean the folks in Berkeley County have let down their guard. This virus is color-blind, sometimes getting through even the most restrictive of measures.

All anyone can do is stay the course. Not always easy to do, but it appears to be working.


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