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Jasper Mayor Dean Vonderheide is urging the community to play it safe during the upcoming holiday season.

The mayor sent out the following letter to Jasper residents on Thursday afternoon:

As we prepare for one of our most treasured holiday seasons, please consider the safety and well-being of family and friends. Evidence reveals that large family gatherings where social distancing and mask-wearing are “temporarily on hold’ for the convenience of celebrating as we’ve done in the past become the “super spreader event.” Our hospital and healthcare professionals are doing all they can to save lives and treat individuals inflicted with COVID-19. The frustration with the casual attitude that “I/we are exempt during our special occasion” is mounting as they recognize a high percentage of those being treated have adopted and lived by this, thus making our healthcare resources stretch and strain to treat.

I would like to plead with you to keep your family and social circle tight. Act as though you or everyone in the room with you are carriers of COVID-19. So many who have contracted the disease don’t even know they are contagious. The Thanksgiving Holiday has proven to be a source of the recent spike. Don’t let Christmas and the New Year become another. Our healthcare system can’t handle another surge and continue to treat the other emergency situations that have a history of repeating during this holiday season. Do what is right to protect yourself and your family. Don’t cave to the pressures of social acceptance and ridicule. We are a strong and wise community when we choose to be.

I do wish you a safe and enjoyable holiday season and a future that is void of COVID-19.

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