Mauston cancels holiday parade; cites worst COVID rate in the state

The Holiday Train Viewing Party is canceled as well.
Published: Dec. 3, 2021 at 2:04 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The worsening COVID-19 pandemic currently plaguing Wisconsin forced the city of Mauston to cancel Friday night’s holiday parade, as well as a later event, citing the county’s highest-in-the-state COVID-19 activity rate.

In a Facebook update, posted just hours before the parade was set to start, city officials added the Holiday Train Viewing Party set for Dec. 18, more than two weeks from now, will also be scratched.

“We understand the disappointment and unfortunate timing of these decisions, but the increasing public health threat outweighs the excitement and anticipation for these events,” Mayor Dennis Nelson wrote in the post.

City officials pointed to Juneau County’s COVID-19 disease activity rate. In the latest Dept. of Health Services’ report, the county sits nearly 50 percent higher than the cutoff for its most severe activity level: critically high.

On Wednesday, DHS reported Juneau Co. recorded 1,453.1 cases per 100,000 residents over the previous two weeks, and the county was not showing signs that the situation was getting better. Only two other counties in the state have a case burden of more than 1,400 per 100,000 people, which are the counties of St. Croix and Dunn.

The population of Juneau Co. is approximately a quarter of 100,000 residents figure DHS uses as per capita rate to compare counties, which would place the total number of cases reported there at approximately 388 over that time period.

Statewide, the activity rate sits at 852.8 per 100,000 residents, below the 1,000-case threshold to be considered ‘critically high’ but still in the ‘very high’ range.

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