Miami Beach

Coronavirus Case Linked to Miami Beach’s Winter Party Festival Attendee: Official

The announcement comes as Miami-Dade County announced restrictions for businesses across the area in order to stop the spread

NBC Universal, Inc.

What to Know

  • Rea Casey, the executive director of the National LGBTQ Task Force, sent a letter confirming that one person who attended has told officials they tested positive for COVID-19
  • Event organizers noted that educational posters were placed throughout the venue while 10,000 hand sanitizers were handed out to partygoers
  • Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said the beach would be closing from 5th Street to 15th Street, and there would be an 11 p.m. curfew in the entertainment district

Officials confirmed that a case of the coronavirus could be linked to a prominent Miami Beach event held earlier this month.

Rea Casey, the executive director of the National LGBTQ Task Force, sent a letter confirming that one person who attended the annual Winter Party Festival held last week has told officials they tested positive for COVID-19.

“While we know there are many places people could have been exposed before and after Winter Party as this virus has developed, we wanted to make sure you have this information as soon as possible,” Casey wrote.

Event organizers noted that educational posters were placed throughout the venue while 10,000 hand sanitizers were handed out to partygoers. Casey added that all guests are encouraged to monitor their health and contact their doctors if they think they have symptoms.

The announcement comes as Miami-Dade County announced restrictions for businesses across the area in order to stop the spread. Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced all bars and clubs are to be closed by 11 p.m. Restaurants must close their dining areas at the same time but can still deliver meals or have customers pick their orders up.

At a news joint news conference Sunday with Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis, Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said the beach would be closing from 5th Street to 15th Street, and there would be an 11 p.m. curfew in the entertainment district.

"We can't have the kinds of crowds we've had, the kinds of gatherings," Gelber said. "I walked down Ocean Drive yesterday and what I saw was incredibly disturbing, it wasn't just the typical large gatherings of people, but it was young people who believe they're invincible and probably don't really think of this in any way as a health crisis."

Gelber said the city was also closing Loomis Park, as well as all parking garages and parking lots, except to residents.

In addition, all non-essential retail stores must close by 10 p.m., Gelber said. The measures were expected to be in effect until March 19, but there will likely be extensions.

In Fort Lauderdale, Trantalis said the dry portion of the public beach would be closed from Harbor Drive to north of Oakland Park Boulevard through April 12.

Fort Lauderdale is also requiring all bars and restaurants to close by 10 p.m. Both Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale will require bars and restaurants to operate at 50 percent capacity.

"This is not forever, we're gonna defeat this disease, there is light at the end of the tunnel," Trantalis said.

Contact Us