With Memorial Day Weekend approaching and temperatures expected to rise, the City of Muscatine says warmer weather will “naturally draw people outside.”
City officials are strongly recommending citizens continue to follow guidelines established by state and federal agencies in response to the pandemic — and that includes hosting or visiting garage sales, yard sales and other outdoor sales events.
“I know that people are anxious to begin with garage sales, and while the best-case scenario is to wait, I know that some will not,” said Mayor of Muscatine Diana Broderson. “With that in mind, please make sure that if you do have a garage sale, make accommodations so that everyone attending — as well as the host — follows all social distancing guidelines.”
The City of Muscatine says some of the guidelines public health departments have provided when having and/or attending any of these sales events include the practice of social distancing.
City officials say those hosting sales events can implement social distancing policies in the following ways:
- By placing posters that customers can see upon arrival and while shopping that encourage the use of social distancing
- By setting up tables and chairs at least 6 feet apart
- By using heavy duty tape to create a flow guide that customers can follow throughout the sale
- By asking customers to stand in a line while spread apart during high traffic times
Public health officials also recommend hosts implement the following sanitation procedures:
- Cleaning all tables and chairs with a disinfectant several times throughout the day, including before the sale starts and after the sale concludes for the day
- Making sure that all merchandise is washed and dried and/or wiped down with a disinfectant product before placing on a table or chair for sale
- Wearing masks and disposable gloves at all times during the sale
- Having hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol on tables and other places for customers to use
The City of Muscatine reminds hosts that the governor’s Emergency Public Health Crisis proclamation that is still in effect does not allow gatherings of 10 or more people.
“My main objective is to keep people safe,” said Mayor Broderson. “The best way to do that is for everyone to stay home. However, as the governor begins reopening the state — including retail stores — it seems garage sales should be allowed as well.”
Mayor Broderson stressed the importance of residents hosting a sales event to figure out a way to have social distancing in place for those attending and for those hosting.
“Please make sure that these guidelines are strictly enforced,” said Mayor Broderson. “If you go to a garage sale that you see is not following social distance guidelines, please skip that sale and move on to another that is following them. If people refrain from attending those garage sales that are not following the recommended guidelines, perhaps the lack of customers will encourage them to follow the guidelines as well.”
City officials thank all Muscatine residents for following the guidelines of social distancing and personal hygiene to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. They advise residents to take the following precautions to protect themselves and others:
- Stay home, especially if you are feeling ill
- Practice social distancing
- Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals
- Wash hands often with water and soap for at least 20 seconds or longer
- Dry hands with a clean towel or air dry hands
- Cover your mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands or after touching surfaces
- Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces often
- Call before visiting your doctor
- Practice good hygiene habits
The City of Muscatine says mental health is just as important as physical health. If you or a loved one are facing problems with alcohol, drugs, gambling, mental health or suicidal thoughts, city officials recommend contacting the Iowa Department of Public Health’s Your Life Iowa — a resource created by the Iowa Department of Public Health for Iowans to chat live, text at 855-895-8398 or call by phone at 855-581-8111 to get reliable information and treatment options as well as find nearby help.
For answers to questions related to COVID-19, the City of Muscatine recommends dialing 2-1-1.