Masks will be available at the event, as will hand sanitizer stations. Unvaccinated people will specifically be urged to wear masks inside the fairgrounds’ buildings. At this point, that’s a suggestion rather than a mandate, Gaither said, but there will be signs encouraging the wearing of masks. More than 25,000 people typically attend the fair over its four-day span.
He said the fair encourages visitors to wear masks at any point if that makes them feel comfortable. “Our position is that we remain agile, flexible and ready to implement what we need to do,” he said.
“My message is we want people to wear masks as much as they want to,” Gaither said. “Our hope is everyone comes out to the fair. If they’re not feeling comfortable they can put a mask on.” This year’s fair will be Aug. 11-14, and Gaither said he’s monitoring safety guidelines and will be ready to adjust if needed.
The risk in Skagit County is currently considered substantial. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week issued new guidelines urging people to wear masks indoors in areas with substantial or high transmission rates.
“We expect a big crowd,” he said. Gaither said he’s heard from other event organizers that gatherings are popular after a year filled with cancellations, closures and isolation.
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