FORT WORTH, Texas - The 2022 Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo is set to go on as planned despite a surge in COVID-19 cases.
As January 14 approaches, stock show planners are getting ready for big crowds and accompanying pandemic protocols, all with safety in mind.
One big change is the HVAC system at the Will Rogers Memorial Center.
"Bipolar ionization technology, which helps kill viruses, airborne viruses," said Matt Brockman, Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo spokesman.
There will also be ample PPE supplies.
"There’ll be a lot of distribution points for masks. There’ll be a lot of hand sanitation stations scattered across the complex. Signage obviously is important," Brockman said.
Fort Worth’s flagship event was cancelled in 2021 due to the pandemic. Now preps for this year’s three week run are happening at a time when COVID-19 is again surging.
Mayor Mattie Parker believes the enhancements in place will provide a necessary balance.
"It is really critical for Fort Worth to try to find some semblance of normalcy. We have to create a balance for public health and our economy and this event is a big part of that. I really excited about doing it safely," Parker said.
A partnership with Tarrant County Public Health will add shots and testing to the stock show line-up.
"So when people get here there going to have an opportunity through Tarrant County Public Health to be vaccinated. We’re working with the FWFD. They will be operating a mobile testing site," Brockman said.
Masks will be encouraged, not mandated.
"After going through almost two years of this pandemic people know what to do. They don’t need mandates as much as the assurance that we’re taking the measures and putting them in place," Brockman said.
The stock show runs January 14 through February 5.
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