Schuylkill County is a little on edge but did its best on Saturday to retain some sense of normalcy amid the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.
We hit up a popular local food shopping spot this afternoon and found the pace of business brisk but far from madness. A local District Judge was spotted among the people stocking up on proteins Saturday.
Grocery stores appeared the same way, though our foresight helped avoid a trip today. Parking lots, at least, were full but not packed.
Inside the local butcher shop, there was definitely a little bit of an edge in the air. Unease, confusion, skepticism … coronavirus was definitely the topic of conversation. If someone coughed, at least a dozen people looked around.
Panic, though? Hardly.
Restrained Normalcy in Schuylkill County?
Yes, people are still buying toilet paper in bulk. Several local stores starting rationing their supplies, limiting customers on how much they could purchase. Other hot-ticket items are also being restricted in how much you can buy right now.
Boyer's in #ShenandoahPA.
Does anyone actually know anyone buying **THAT** much toilet paper it's leading to this? Seriously? I'd hope people would be smarter than this… pic.twitter.com/7sEYyPIJsD
— Kaylee Lindenmuth (@Kaylin5171) March 15, 2020
That wasn’t the case for the meats and cheeses where we were and definitely not the case for beer and a little revelry.
We practiced good social distancing and stayed away from the gathering at The Wheel restaurant in downtown Pottsville. But that wasn’t the case for everyone.
The Wheel carried on with business as usual – promising to take extra precaution to maintain a sanitary environment – and had the St. Patrick’s Day party they originally planned around Pottsville’s St. Patrick’s Day parade.
Today was Pottsville Patty’s… social distancing was not practiced.
— Ty (@tygardner570) March 15, 2020
The parade was cancelled but people didn’t stay away. From what we could tell, it was busy inside. Cars were parked all the way up to Mahantongo on Second Street.
0 Cases of Coronavirus in Schuylkill County, 47 Now in Pennsylvania
Perhaps the reason people don’t seem as panicked as you might see on television or in other reports is the lack of a positive COVID-19 coronavirus case. And there are still no cases in any county surrounding Schuylkill County.
Statewide, there are now 47 presumed positive or confirmed cases of COVID-19. Allegheny County, home to Pittsburgh, saw its first two confirmed cases on Saturday.
Two more cases were added to the Montgomery County total, bringing it to 20. Montgomery, by far, has seen the most amount of positive or confirmed COVID-19 coronavirus cases.
Here’s a county-by-county breakdown of the amount of presumed positive or confirmed cases by Pennsylvania county:
Coronavirus in PennsylvaniaCounty breakdown of positive cases of COVID-19 coronavirus in Pennsylvania (as of March 19, 12:00 a.m.)
|Pennsylvania||Positive cases||First reported|
|Montgomery||42||March 7, 2020|
|Philadelphia||17||March 10, 2020|
|Delaware||14||March 6, 2020|
|Allegheny||11||March 14, 2020|
|Cumberland||10||March 13, 2020|
|Bucks||9||March 11, 2020|
|Chester||9||March 13, 2020|
|Monroe||7||March 9, 2020|
|Beaver||2||March 17, 2020|
|Pike||2||March 12, 2020|
|Washington||2||March 13, 2020|
|York||2||March 18, 2020|
|Berks||1||March 18, 2020|
|Lackawanna||1||March 18, 2020|
|Lehigh||1||March 15, 2020|
|Luzerne||1||March 15, 2020|
|Northampton||1||March 12, 2020|
|Wayne||1||March 6, 2020|
|TOTAL CONFIRMED POSITIVE||133|
Statewide coronavirus data shows that 402 people who have been tested for possible COVID-19 infection. To date, 205 people have tested negative and 150 cases are pending.