Tuesday update

In an extremely wise move, Shelby County Schools have announced classes will be all virtual when school resumes August 31. Teachers will have the option of teaching from the classroom or remotely, but all students will be remote. This was the right thing to do, not only to prevent hotspots of COVID-19 in schools, but to protect teachers who are at risk due to their age or medical conditions.

This does create a hardship for parents who need to get back to work, and can’t afford to be home during the day as their children learn virtually. Centers are being set up around Shelby County where children can be dropped off for safe virtual learning.

The Downtown location will be the Fogleman YMCA at 245 Madison. As Commissioner Sawyer said in the tweet above, there is no signup yet but this can help you plan. Note that the capacity of Fogleman YMCA is only 72 for virtual learning, so this is something you’re going to want to keep attuned to if it sounds like an option that could help you.

Despite the announcement today, the die-in marking the death of healthy safety in public schools proceeded as planned last night on N. Main in front of the Shelby County building. Despite going virtual, SCSD has a lot of ground to cover in a month to get prepared to open. Many school districts in the country will not be as forward-thinking about letting kids go virtual, and/or won’t have the resources to make that happen. I would bet part of the protest was to acknowledge that the nation’s Secretary of Education has both the intelligence and compassion of a potted plant.

In other COVID-19 news, eight more players and two staff members of the Miami Marlins MLB team tested positive and therefore Monday’s home opener against Baltimore had to be canceled. That brings the total to 14 Marlins employees, and also potentially affects the Philadelphia Phillies, who hosted Miami over the weekend, and the Atlanta Braves, who had an exhibition game with the Marlins six days ago. The Marlins will be able to keep playing, calling up members of their 30-man taxi squad to replace those going on the newly created COVID-19 disabled list, but it is not clear if games missed will be made up in an already very short 60-game season.

I have a feeling the MLB season will be called off by mid-August. Pro sports can operate in a bubble, as the NBA has proven, but traveling to each other’s stadiums when you have a new opponent every 3 days is going to prove too much of a challenge. The NFL better be watching this carefully. As for college football, no way it gets beyond week three, and it shouldn’t even get to week one.

The Grizzlies have the Miami Heat in their final scrimmage game today at 1 PM. You can stream it on grizzlies.com or watch it on NBATV.  The advantage of streaming the game on the Grizzlies site is you get commentary from local announcer Pete Pranica. The Grizzlies will be the away team, meaning the Heat will have their signage, floor announcers, and music.

How I wish I could watch the scrimmage at the Blind Bear…

Worth a read: Eyes on the NBA bubble Part 1 from Grizzly Bear Blues

The first pediatric death related to COVID-19 in Shelby County happened over the weekend, doctors report. Doctors admit that the patient died from an underlying condition that was probably not aggravated by the coronavirus; nevertheless, the patient had a positive test so it had to be reported that way, giving Facebook “medical experts” one more thing to talk about.

From Cocozza, the ghost restaurant operating in the kitchen and on the patio of the Majestic Grille:

Your safety and our staff’s safety is our main priority. We require our staff to be tested every two weeks for that very reason. One of our staff, who has no direct contact with guests, unfortunately tested positive for COVID-19. Therefore we’ll be closed for the upcoming week to allow our staff to self isolate. We will reopen next Tuesday, August 4, following a negative test for onsite employees.
If you care about our industry at all. If you’d like to be able to pick up food curbside, enjoy a date night at your favorite restaurant or host your rehearsal dinner or retirement at a restaurant ever again…..please for the love of all things holy…write your Elected Representatives & shout it to the mountain tops: MAKE SAME DAY TESTING & RESULTS READILY AVAILABLE. SPREAD THE WORD THAT WEARING A MASK IS SMALL BUSINESS FRIENDLY. STOP POLITICIZING A HEALTH CRISIS & START TAKING IT SERIOUSLY.

Speaking of masks… Mask Up Memphis will be a free event happening at Fourth Bluff Park Saturday from 4 to 7. Stop by and pick up a free mask, free school supplies, and a free snow cone.

You’ve heard of drive-in movies. Now you can try drive-in trivia:

First day in a while that the MemphisWeather.net forecast has not mentioned a heat index, and the last day for a while the high is expected to be above 90. 40% chance of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon, and then we are expected to get 2 to 4 inches of rain the rest of this week.

… Well, never mind that part about not mentioning a heat index. Just found this:

That’s it for now. I will try to catch today’s COVID-19 task force committee press conference and take notes to publish tomorrow, or possibly after the Grizzlies scrimmage today.