Cobb cities cancel events, meetings due to coronavirus concerns

For the first time, applications for the Kennesaw Farmers Market are available online. AJC file photo
For the first time, applications for the Kennesaw Farmers Market are available online. AJC file photo

Concerns over the spread of coronavirus has forced at least two Cobb County cities to call off events and certain public meetings scheduled to take place over the next few weeks.

The city of Kennesaw said effective Thursday, it will postpone all “non-essential public meetings” due to concerns for the health of citizens and staff members.

Opening day activities for the city's Farmers Market, set for April 6, have been called off "due to recent developments surrounding COVID-19," according to its Facebook page.

Market organizers said they are waiting for direction from the city on how they should proceed with the rest of the season.

City spokeswoman Rebecca Graham said the City Council will continue holding its regular meetings and meetings required due to “ordinance processes.” However, the city will postpone until further notice monthly meetings held by city boards, commissions and authorities. Volunteers who serve on these bodies have been notified by email of the cancellations.

Local governments are weighing how to respond to the threat of potential exposure to the virus. Cobb County has cancelled open houses scheduled through April for the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax referendum that will be on the ballot in November.

Smyrna Mayor Derek Norton said the city has also cancelled its annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival scheduled for March 14-15 and March 17 at the Market Village.

The city has also cancelled a Ward 3 town hall meeting set for March 15 and Transit Study Open Houses scheduled for March 24-25.

Public programs scheduled through the end of March at the Smyrna Public Library are also cancelled, as are activities that fall outside aquatic sessions at the Wolfe Adult Recreation Center.

“As we work through this, we will work at rescheduling at a later date and will continue to communicate changes or any updates on services and events and programs,” he said.

The Cobb County Public Library System said effective Friday, all programs and events, including its spring book sale, will be cancelled through March. West Cobb Regional Library remains closed and no reopening date has been announced said, spokesman Tom Brooks.

The city of Marietta is evaluating the situation on a daily basis, spokeswoman Lindsey Wiles said. Marietta is reaching out to organizations planning major events over the next two months in the city “so that we can have an open line of communication in the event of any delayed, canceled, and rescheduled events,” she said.

Marietta Square Farmers Market organizers have no plans to shut down its operations at the moment, Wiles said. They are asking vendors to bring disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer with them for Saturday’s event and to stay home if they are feeling unwell.

“They plan on taking it week by week and will re-evaluate the situation each Tuesday/Wednesday before the farmers market that weekend,” Wiles said.

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