Alexandria’s COVID-19 numbers are still trickling in.

There have been 11,854 cases, and of the City has not reported a death since May 25. There have been 137 total deaths.

Across Virginia there have been 11,318 deaths and 677,812 cases.

Below is the VDH breakdown of cases over the last six week in Alexandria:

  • Zero cases reported Sunday, June 13
  • Eight cases reported Saturday, June 12
  • Zero cases reported Friday June 11
  • Zero cases reported Thursday, June 10
  • Two cases reported Wednesday, June 9
  • Zero cases reported Tuesday, June 8
  • Zero cases reported Monday, June 7

On the vaccine front, 69,561 residents have been fully vaccinated, and 86,387 residents have been partially vaccinated. Alexandria has a goal of fully vaccinating 110,000 residents, which is 80% of the population.

Find vaccine providers in Alexandria here. If you feel sick, here is how to get tested.

Courtesy VDH

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Morning Notes

Sheriff Dana Lawhorne to receive Lifetime Valor Award — “In recognition of his retirement, we are pleased to honor Sheriff Dana Lawhorne with a Lifetime Valor Award at this year’s Valor Awards. Join us virtually, on June 22nd, to honor Sheriff Lawhorne’s 43 years of law enforcement service to Alexandria.” [Chamber ALX]

West End Business Association hosting 1 p.m. conversation with Mayor — “Take this opportunity to ask questions and connect with Mayor Justin Wilson about how he would continue to serve the city of Alexandria.” [WEBA]

Chinquapin Recreation Center closing for improvements June 26 — “The City of Alexandria’s Chinquapin Park Recreation Center and Aquatics Facility (3210 King St.) will close Saturday, June 26 through Monday, Sept. 6, for several planned facility improvements and annual cleaning.” [Zebra]

Vaccine Equity Clinic on Route 1 in Fairfax County offering free transportation — “The Health Department and Fairfax Connector have partnered to offer free transportation to those who want to get vaccinated at the clinic, located in the former Safeway site at 7451 Mount Vernon Square Center in Alexandria. Fairfax Connector’s Free Vaccine Shuttle will run along Fairfax Connector’s line in that region.” [Fairfax County]

Annual Waterfront Commission walk is today — “The walk will be in person starting at (5 p.m. at) the intersection of Oronoco and South Union Streets and will proceed south to Robinson Landing. The walk is anticipated to end at 6:30 p.m.” [City of Alexandria]

Fire Department conducting community meeting on restructuring today — “The Alexandria Fire Department (AFD) will implement an organizational restructure, effective Saturday, June 12, 2021. The goals of the changes are to improve service efficiency and response times across the City; reduce cost; increase safety on the roadways; and improve response preparedness for specialty teams such as the Technical Rescue, Hazardous Materials, and Inland Water Rescue teams. AFD Representatives will present the upcoming changes to the community and answer questions.” [City of Alexandria]

Today’s weather — “Rain showers in the morning with numerous thunderstorms developing in the afternoon. High 81F. Winds ENE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%… Thunderstorms in the evening, then variable clouds overnight with still a chance of showers. Low around 65F. Winds E at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 70%.” [Weather.com]

New job: Ghost tour guide — “US Ghost Adventures, a national tour operation is seeking energetic storytellers to lead 90-minute walking tour groups downtown. This part-time position is ideal for self-motivated candidates looking for a fun way to make extra income in the evenings.” [Indeed]

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Morning Notes

McAuliffe, Ayala, Herring win statewide Democratic primary — “Former Virginia governor and longtime fixture as a national Democratic Party leader Terry McAuliffe won the state’s Democratic nomination for a second term as governor in Tuesday’s primary election, the Associated Press reported at 7:44 p.m. In the two other statewide races, the lieutenant governor’s contest was called by AP for Del. Hala Ayala. In the attorney general race, Del. Jay Jones conceded to incumbent Mark Herring.” [Patch]

Council candidates pose after Democratic primary — “Congratulations to our 2021 Democratic nominees for Alexandria Mayor (Justin Wilson) and City Council (John Chapman, Alyia Gaskins, Amy Jackson, Canek Aguirre, Sarah Bagley, and Kirk McPike), and the 45th House District (Elizabeth Bennett Parker)! Onward to November!” [Facebook]

Alexandria Health Department expands clinic partnerships and locations — “In recent weeks, the Alexandria Health Department (AHD) has expanded vaccine clinic partnerships and locations. In Alexandria and the region, mass vaccination events have slowed significantly over the past month. In response, AHD has focused on targeting outreach in communities where vaccination rates are lower and partnering with organizations to reach priority populations.” [City of Alexandria]

Made in ALX hosting first art show and sale — “Saturday, June 26, join a group of Alexandria artists on the patio behind ALX Community (near the gazebo between the Torpedo Factory and The Blackwall Hitch) to see new pieces and pick up something unique for your home!” [Alexandria Living]

Today’s weather — “Cloudy. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. High 88F. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph… Overcast. Low 71F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]

New job: Front desk assistant — “Dogtopia, the industry leader in dog daycare, boarding, and spa services has an immediate opening for an energetic, organized, sales and solution-minded individual to join our team as our Sales Receptionist.” [Indeed]

Photo via Alexandria Democratic Committee/Facebook

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The Alexandria Health Department on Friday, May 28, is launching a new accreditation program for businesses to make visitors feel safe.

That’s the day that Governor Ralph Northam is lifting all COVID-19 restrictions throughout Virginia.

The ALX Promise Gold program is the new version of the ALX Promise program, which launched in May 2020 and required business owners and staff to undergo health safety training. More than 450 businesses participated.

“The ALX Promise program really helped to reassure the community and people that were coming into our community that we were a safe place to come,” said Rachel Stradling, an environmental health manager with the AHD. “We really want to make sure that we continue that momentum this summer, while reassuring people that our businesses are still doing the right thing.”

Stradling continued, “Yes, we may be open at an increased capacity, but we want the community to have reassurance that these businesses still really care about the community’s health.”

The new program is being launched in a partnership with Visit Alexandria.

Nearly 70 businesses have already signed up to participate in the new 45-minute class, which updates business owners and staff on the latest updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Businesses must also pledge to report any new coronavirus cases, allow staff to get paid time off to get vaccinated, and maintain sanitation practices.

Some businesses, like fibre space in Old Town, are continuing to ask customers to wear face masks inside, while other big chain stores like Target and Wal-Mart have eliminated mask and distancing requirements.

“We obviously want every business to participate in the program,” Stradling said. “This really is the gold standard. It’s asking you to report every case, it’s asking you to give people paid time off to get vaccinated and we understand that that may be challenging to some businesses. But we really want to encourage as many businesses as possible to participate, and they will get an awesome new decal, which is a really pretty gold color and really stands out.”

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Alexandria’s COVID-19 deaths have increased by one to 136, and the number of cases has reached 11,825, an increase of 26 cases since last Tuesday, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

The city’s seven-day moving average is now 3.9.

Below is the VDH breakdown of cases over the last six days in Alexandria:

  • Two new cases reported Monday, May 24
  • Three new cases reported Sunday, May 23
  • Four new cases reported Saturday, May 22
  • One new case reported Friday, May 21
  • 18 new cases reported Thursday, May 20
  • Zero cases reported Wednesday, May 19
  • Zero cases reported Tuesday, May 18

On the vaccine front, 60,950 residents have been fully vaccinated, and 79,801 residents have been partially vaccinated. Alexandria has a goal of fully vaccinating 110,000 residents, which is 80% of the population.

Find vaccine providers in Alexandria here. If you feel sick, here is how to get tested.

Graph via VDH

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Morning Notes

Zero COVID-19 cases in Alexandria for two days, then cases jumped by 18 cases — “The latest update on COVID-19: 77,613 Alexandrians with at least 1 dose (56.4% of 12+ pop.) 58,200 fully vaccinated (42.3% of 12+ pop.) Positive tests up 18 to 11,817 (35 in last week) 7-day Positivity Rate up to 2.4% 1 new hospitalization.” [Twitter]

Today is Bike to Work Day — “Bike to Work Day is free and open to all commuters, but registration is required.” [City of Alexandria]

Virginia Department of Health warns of tick season — “CDC research shows that the use of advanced molecular detection (AMD) techniques may help improve diagnostic testing of tickborne disease and enhance disease detection and discovery.” [Twitter]

Today’s weather — “Plentiful sunshine. High 86F. Winds SSE at 5 to 10 mph… Partly cloudy (in the evening). Low 59F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New job: Server, host, bartender, busser — “$500 Sign-On Bonus – $100 once training is complete and $100 every 30 days for 4 months. This isn’t just your next job – it’s your opportunity to be part of an amazing team that delivers on our promise to meet and exceed our guest’s experience the moment they walk through our doors! We offer structured programs for growth and career advancement and consider our employees to be our greatest asset.” [Indeed]

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(Updated at 4:30 p.m.) The Alexandria City Council will consider adjusting the city’s face mask ordinance to evolve with Governor Ralph Northam’s executive order, which is continually being amended to loosen statewide coronavirus restrictions.

The ordinance states that all city residents under the age of five years old are required to wear face masks except while exercising, eating and drinking or if they have a verified health condition. The ordinance was approved last September and expires this September.

The amendment under consideration for Tuesday night means that the governor’s eventual lifting of a mask mandate will subsequently result in the city taking the same immediate action.

ALXnow first reported the city’s intention to amend the mask ordinance after the CDC issued its guidance last month that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask outdoors, except in certain crowded settings and venues.

Northam also recently announced that, should COVID-19 numbers continue to decline, he would lift the following restrictions on May 15,

  • Social gatherings: The maximum number of individuals permitted in a social gathering will increase to 100 people for indoor settings and 250 people for outdoor settings. Social gatherings are currently limited to 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors.
  • Entertainment venues: Indoor entertainment and public amusement venues will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity or 1,000 people, up from 30 percent capacity or 500 people. Outdoor venues will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity–up from 30 percent–with no specific cap on the number of attendees.
  • Recreational sporting events: The number of spectators allowed at indoor recreational sporting events will increase from 100 to 250 spectators or 50 percent capacity, whichever is less. Outdoor recreational sporting events will increase from 500 to 1,000 people or 50 percent capacity, whichever is less.
  • Alcohol sales: Restaurants may return to selling alcohol after midnight, and dining room closures will no longer be required between midnight and 5:00 a.m.

There have been 134 COVID-19 deaths and 11,754 cases in Alexandria, according to the Virginia Department of Health. More than half of the city’s residents have gotten one shot of the vaccine (73,709 residents) and about 38% of city residents have been fully vaccinated (51,161 residents).

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About 40% of City residents have gotten their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, and nearly 30% have been fully inoculated.

Alexandrians can walk in to get their COVID-19 vaccine, as the city expects 12,650 doses this week, including first and second doses, according to the Alexandria Health Department.

The city will receive 11,610 doses this week, not including additional vaccine doses federal programs provide directly to participating pharmacies and Alexandria’s federally qualified health center, Neighborhood Health.

“AHD administers vaccines at clinic events and allocates the remaining doses to private providers,”  according to the city. “Appointments from AHD and private providers are listed on alexandriava.gov/Vaccines, with both scheduled and walk-in opportunities.”

Vaccine Update

According to VDH, 69,810 residents have gotten at least one shot and 46,508 residents have been fully vaccinated.

  • White — 16,944 first doses, 12,009 fully vaccinated
  • Latino — 8,286 first doses, 4,202 fully vaccinated
  • Black — 4,079 first doses, 2,539 fully vaccinated
  • Other — 3,414 first doses, 2,312 fully vaccinated
  • Asian of Pacific Islander — 1,629 first doses, 901 fully vaccinated
  • Native American — 265 first doses, 115 fully vaccinated

Women have received 47,663 first doses and 26,791 have gotten their second shot, while 39,629 men have received their first doses and 19,717 have been fully vaccinated.

The following age groups received their vaccinations:

  • 80+    — 3,097 got one dose, 2,573 fully vaccinated
  • 70-79 — 7,106 got one dose, 6,037 fully vaccinated
  • 60-69 — 10,234 got one dose, 7,833 fully vaccinated
  • 50-59 — 11,294 got one dose, 7,477 fully vaccinated
  • 40-49 — 12,485 got one dose, 7,935 fully vaccinated
  • 30-39 — 15,412 got one dose, 9,592 fully vaccinated
  • 20-29 — 8,175 got one dose, 4,457 fully vaccinated
  • 10-19  — 2,121d got one dose, 661 fully vaccinated
  • 0-9     — No Vaccines distributed

Demographics

No new deaths have been reported since last week, and the number of cases in the city now stands at 11,683, an increase of 113 cases since this time last week. The death toll stands at 133, and the city’s seven-day moving average is now 14.4, which is down from 15.6 from this time last week.

Across Virginia, there have been 10,807 deaths and there are or have been 661,925 cases of the virus. There have also been 7.1 million PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests and the state’s seven-day positivity rate is 4.6%.

There are or have been 6,037 women (with 62 deaths) and 5,595 men (with 71 deaths) in Alexandria with the virus. The only age groups that have not experienced a death are children and teenagers.

  • 80+    — 54 deaths, 274 cases
  • 70-79 — 33 deaths, 358 cases
  • 60-69 — 22 deaths, 868 cases
  • 50-59 — 15 deaths, 1,388 cases
  • 40-49 — Four deaths, 1,932 cases
  • 30-39 — Three deaths, 2,700 cases
  • 20-29 — One death, 2,402 cases
  • 10-19  — Zero deaths, 880 cases
  • 0-9     — Zero deaths, 857 cases

Latino residents have the most infections with 3,816 reported cases (19 deaths), white residents with 3,050 cases (63 deaths), and Black residents with 2,516 cases (39 deaths). There are 576 cases with Asian or Pacific Islander residents (eight deaths), 388 cases classified as “other” (two deaths) and 14 native American cases (no deaths).

Photo via CDC/Unsplash

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Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson has asked City staff to prepare a revised face mask ordinance since news broke that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is advising that anyone who is fully vaccinated no longer needs to wear them.

“Fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask outdoors, except in certain crowded settings and venues,” the CDC said Tuesday. “For the purposes of this guidance, people are considered fully vaccinated for COVID-19 (more than) 2 weeks after they have received the second dose in a 2-dose series (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna), or (more than) 2 weeks after they have received a single-dose vaccine (Johnson and Johnson (J&J)/Janssen).”

Wilson, who has been fully vaccinated, said that the city’s current face mask regulation will continue as-is until the Alexandria Health Department  gives the all-clear from the governor’s recommendation. Wilson added that the city has asked when Governor Ralph Northam will make the announcement, but did not yet receive a response.

“I have asked our staff to prepare a revised ordinance incorporating the new guidance,” Wilson said. “But we also will await the governor’s action since they basically took our local ordinance and applied it statewide.”

Face coverings have been mandatory in public in Virginia since May 29, with exceptions such as while dining, exercising, or has a health condition that makes wearing a face mask unsafe.

Wilson said he will continue to wear face masks until the governor makes his recommendation.

“I still wear masks when I’m around people outside my family,” he said.

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Alexandria turned another corner in the fight against COVID-19 on Tuesday, as the city has moved into vaccination open scheduling.

“This is a big moment, as the days of long waiting lists for vaccinations are largely behind us,” Mayor Justin Wilson told ALXnow. “The next phase is a new challenge as we must work to bring doses to those who have not sought them and continue to spread the word that we have three very safe and effective vaccines that are available to Alexandria residents. This is how we get our residents and businesses back to normal.”

More than 108,000 residents have gotten shots — 42,094 fully vaccinated and 65,960 single doses administered, according to the Virginia Department of Health. It’s a far cry from the 25,000+ vaccine waitlist earlier this year, and means that residents can now choose vaccination appointment dates and locations to get inoculated without pre-registering.

“This milestone highlights the hard work by AHD and City staff, the dedication of Medical Reserve Corps and community volunteers, and the contribution of each Alexandrian who has received the vaccine to help end the pandemic,” AHD said in a release. “With the increase in COVID-19 variants and ongoing significant community transmission in Alexandria, streamlined vaccine appointment open scheduling will increase access to vaccination for all residents and essential workers.”

According to the Alexandria Health Department, residents and frontline essential workers who pre-registered for a vaccine with the city or the Virginia Department of Health, have been contacted for an appointment. The city also recently began re-administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which was temporarily halted after reports of side effects.

The city has set a summer target of fully inoculating 80% of residents (106,000 people).

“COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, free and they can save your life,” AHD said. “When enough people get vaccinated, Alexandrians can get back to normal.”

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