Aug 28, 2020
In response to an uptick in COVID cases in Western New York, New York State has set up eight new free rapid testing sites. Four of the sites are in Buffalo and another is in Dunkirk, where there has been a cluster of cases at a manufacturing plant.
Residents of Western New York (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, and Niagara Counties) can make appointments to get tested starting tomorrow, with results taking just 15 minutes. You must call 1-833-NYSTRNG (1-833-697-8764) to make an appointment before going. I especially urge New Yorkers who are experiencing symptoms of COVID or have been in close contact with someone who is positive for COVID to get tested.
If you don't live in the Western New York region, there are still over 700 sites where you can get tested. Find one near you here.
1. The total number of COVID hospitalizations remains low. Yesterday, total hospitalizations dropped to 478. Of the 97,826 tests reported yesterday, 636, or 0.65%, were positive—three straight weeks of an infection rate under 1 percent and a record low. Sadly, we lost 3 New Yorkers to the virus.
2. New York has now conducted over 8 million tests and continues to lead the nation in testing. Anyone can get tested for any reason. You should always get tested if you have reason to believe you have COVID. Find a testing site here.
3. This year, The Great New York State Fair will be held virtually. The State Fair is a beloved New York tradition. Sadly, the in-person fair had to be canceled this year due to COVID, but the State Fair is hosting a whole slate of virtual events so New Yorkers can still experience the Fair safely. For example, the annual Butter Sculpture—an 800-pound sculpture carved out of butter—will be unveiled on September 1st.
4. The iconic "Hot Dog King" in front of the Met Museum reopens tomorrow along with the museum. Owned by Bronx native Dan Rossi, the hot dog stand has been in business directly in front of the museum steps for 13 years, but when the museum closed due to COVID, so did his hot dog stand. Now that the museum reopens this weekend, he is ready to start selling hot dogs and pretzels to guests as they return. NYC museums like the Met have been permitted to reopen at 25% occupancy and with staggered, timed ticketing.