All commercial and entertainment events have been canceled for this year’s Leavenworth County Fair because of concerns about COVID-19. But there may be an opportunity for members of 4-H and FFA to have their projects judged at the fairgrounds in Tonganoxie.


That is according to a statement posted on a website for the Leavenworth County Fair. The fair had been scheduled for July 28-Aug. 1.


“After consultation with state, county and city officials it was determined that the traditional 2020 fair would not be possible with current and expected social distancing requirements,” the statement reads. “The fair board felt it needed to make the determination to cancel parts of the fair at this time in order to investigate alternatives to the traditional displays and judging of 4-H/FFA projects.”


According to the statement, members of the board that organizes the fair have made a commitment to work with the Leavenworth County Extension Office to provide the opportunity for 4-H and FFA members to have their projects judged at the fairgrounds.


On Friday, the state of Kansas will enter phase two of the governor’s plan for gradually easing restrictions related to COVID-19.


Gov. Laura Kelly initially launched a three-phase plan for reopening the state. But she announced last week the creation of phase 1.5. That phase went into effect Monday. And on Tuesday, Kelly announced a modified phase two will go into effect Friday.


The modified phase two will allow mass gatherings of up to 15 people.


Under phase two, places such as theaters, arcades, bowling alleys and museums can reopen. Community centers also can reopen. In-person group exercise classes also will be allowed as long as the groups are no larger than 15 people.


State-owned casinos also will be able to reopen once their reopening plans have been approved by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.


Bars and night clubs have to remain closed. But these types of businesses that already are offering curbside and carryout services can continue to do so.


Public swimming pools also have to remain closed during phase two.


Under the governor’s modified plan, the earliest phase three can begin is June 8, and the phase out period can begin no earlier than June 22.


A link to the updated plan can be found at covid.ks.gov


Leavenworth County Health Officer Jamie Miller spoke Wednesday to Leavenworth County commissioners.


Miller said there will continue to be new COVID-19 cases as things reopen in the county.


“The virus is not gone,” he said.


He said social distancing will be key going forward.


“Everyone needs to take care of themselves,” he said.


He said wearing masks is still recommended when people are going to be in close contact including in areas where social distancing may be difficult.


As of 4 p.m. Wednesday, there have been a total of 1,058 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Leavenworth County since the start of the pandemic, according to the local Health Department.


Of those, 815 cases involve inmates at the Lansing Correctional Facility and 67 involve inmates and staff members at the Grossman Center halfway house in Leavenworth.


Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR