The response of our town’s residents and businesses to this year’s COVID-19 pandemic has proven to me that we are resilient in the face of challenges that come our way. Now that initial reopening, beach season, school starting back up, and other measures we approached this year are behind us, the cooler temperatures bring a newfound sense of thoughtfulness to the pandemic. It is my hope that as a town we can remain vigilant by adhering to the precautionary guidelines established by the CDC.

Our biggest defense at the moment is making a habit of the health and safety practices that we have been hearing about for months. Wear a face covering when in public, indoors and outdoors when within six feet of someone outside of your household. Wash your mask routinely, and wash your hands regularly throughout the day to prevent the spread of germs. Keep a social distance from others to limit the spread, and keep group sizes small. It remains important to keep in mind who you have come in contact with recently, in an effort to contact trace if the need arises.

Cold and flu season is also upon us. Do your best to be vigilant with your own personal health and take care of yourself in the months ahead. Aside from frequent handwashing and limiting exposure to sick people, practice healthy habits like eating well, drinking plenty of fluids, and relieving stress.

We are nearing the holiday season, a time when we need to take extra precaution in determining how we will celebrate this year. The CDC has been proactive in providing guidance on holiday gatherings on their website. Adhering to these recommendations is best practice as we look ahead. Ease of spreading also means that we should be restricting travel as much as possible. Fortunately for us in Scarborough, we have access to an array of natural resources right here in our own backyards. I encourage you to enjoy the fresh fall air from one of our many Scarborough Land Trust trails or the Eastern Trail, beaches, and parks. This is also a safe and healthy way to connect with friends from a social distance.

The State of Maine recently (Oct. 13) entered Stage 4 of reopening, which increased indoor seating capacity in restaurants and prepares bars and tasting rooms to open for indoor service on Nov. 2. This is a positive step for our business community and an opportunity for you to support our local restaurants. When patronizing these spaces, please continue to maintain best practices in abiding by CDC guidelines and offering your patience and support for staff. The Town has recently passed an extension on the ordinance for restaurants to continue outdoor seating if possible, so be sure to dress warmly and bring layers if choosing an outdoor dining setting.

National and statewide COVID-19 response has evolved throughout the year, and we plan to adjust our ongoing response accordingly. Please stay connected to your town resources: ‘Like’ our Facebook page, subscribe to our bi-weekly E-Newsletter, and check our town website routinely. It is our hope that the Scarborough community stays as healthy and safe as possible during this time, and together as neighbors we can make this happen.

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