Crowds force Connecticut officials to close state parks

Ninety-seven people died in Connecticut from COVID-19 and the state's total number of cases increased to more than 29,000, state officials reported on Saturday.

More than 100,000 people have been tested in the state, a number that may soon increase. Last week, state epidemiologist Matthew Cartter said there could be 50,000 tests performed in Connecticut per week by the end of May, compared with about 4,000 tests being performed per week now.


Currently, testing has focused heavily on frontline health workers and ICU patients, but Governor Ned Lamont said there will be an emphasis on testing food service workers and other frontline employees, those working in factories and residents in congested areas.

The highest number of cases in the state as of Saturday, 2,491, was recorded in the city of Stamford, followed by Bridgeport with 2,099. The death toll in Connecticut has increased to 2,436. The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 fell by 41 to 1,551.

For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as a fever and cough, that go away in two to three weeks. For some, especially the elderly and people with existing health problems, it can cause more serious illnesses.


In other developments related to coronavirus in Connecticut:




The beautiful spring weather drove people to Connecticut parks on Saturday, forcing state officials to close many that were overbooked according to state guidelines for social detachment.

The State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection had closed at least 11 parks because their parking areas were in capacity. Authorities asked residents to look for less-used parks to avoid crowds.

Among the parks to reach capacity were Sleeping Giant State Park in Hamden, Wadsworth Falls State Park in Middletown and Talcott Mountain State Park in Simsbury.

DEEP implemented lower capacity limits in the parks to support social distance. He says the closings are temporary and that the parks can open the next day.


RESTAURANTS reopen for a cause

Three family restaurants that closed several weeks ago due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been reopened with a special service for frontline workers.

Ristorante Luce in Hamden, Goodfellas in New Haven and Bin 100 in Milford reopened Friday just for the trip. The New Haven Register reports that the three will also provide free meals to rescuers.

Goodfellas is owned by Gerry Iannaccone, and his sister, Elena Fusco, owns Bin 100. Her nephew, Paul Iannaccone, handles the daily operations at Ristorante Luce.

Lamont said last week that outdoor dining in restaurants could be resumed from May 20, except for any significant outbreaks of the new coronavirus.

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