🌱 Grand Strand COVID Testing Update + Horry Co Teacher Shortage

·5 min read

Happy Sunday, people of the Grand Strand! It's me again, Kathy Mandell, your host of the Myrtle Beach Daily.

A glance at Sunday's slightly warmer weather:

Partly sunny and warmer. High: 68 Low: 52.

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Here are the top five stories in Myrtle Beach today:

  1. Myrtle Beach Area Chamber Of Commerce has announced that there are free coronavirus testing sites throughout the Grand Strand. Omicron is an evolving situation, but for now SCDHEC is running testing sites and events throughout South Carolina. The department is urging residents to "be positive that you're negative" by testing regularly if you go out and about in the community. Tests are free and insurance isn't needed. Results generally come through email or text in 72 hours. There could be delays at this time. (Press Release Desk) Related story about test result delays: (WPDE)

  2. The spike in omicron cases across Horry County has medical professionals at the ready. Chief medical officer of Conway Medical Center, Dr. Paul Richardson, says there has been a "tremendous increase" in testing and positive results, and that the omicron variant is "incredibly contagious.” Richardson reported that fewer patients are on ventilators at his facility than during previous variants of COVID-19. He wants to assure the community that area hospitals are ready to combat the omicron variant. (Myhorrynews)

  3. The number of Horry County teachers and substitute teachers in quarantine due to COVID-19 has risen significantly, adding to the teacher shortage occurring throughout the state of South Carolina. A shortage of educators in SC was already happening for several years, and the virus has made it worse. School staff members and teachers are being asked to cover for those who are absent, and it's really taking a toll on everyone. (WBTW)

  4. Collection of the new impact fees appears to be a very successful decision for Horry County. The fees have brought in $1 million so far, since being put into effect in October. Impact fees are charged to developers who build new homes or businesses, and the cost is eventually passed along within the sale price of the property to the homeowner or business owner. The money will be used by Horry County to pay for parks, waste management, and public safety. (WMBF)

  5. The City of Myrtle Beach has two code enforcement officers responsible for all the residential and commercial properties within the city, and that's not enough. The city is looking to add two additional code enforcement officers to the team. Assistant city manager Brian Tucker has assured the public that buildings in the city are safe, and said the city wants to step up code enforcement to show how serious they are about building safety. (WBTW)

Today in Myrtle Beach:

  • Grand Strand Boat & Sportsman Expo @ MB Convention Center (10:00 AM)

  • Cruise-In by Hot Rod Promotions @ Cheesesteak Factory Surfside Beach (12:00 PM)

  • January Beach Trash & Treasure Hunt (beach clean-up) @ Garden City Pier (12:00 PM)

  • Soup Chowder Cook Off @ Garden City Beach Bar & Grill (3:00 PM)

  • Benefit concert for the family of Ken Hartsell @ Duck's Night Life (2:00 PM)

  • Suavocado @ Dead Dog Saloon (6:00 PM)

From my notebook:

  • Surfside Pier construction is finally happening! The rebuild of the pier after it was destroyed by Hurricane Matthew in 2016 has taken quite a while. Developers hope that the all-concrete pier will be finished and open by the end of 2022. (WPDE)

  • News13's Pet of the Weekend is Provolone, and we are not talking about cheese! Provolone is a mixed-breed dog, between two and three years of age. He does great with kids and loves car rides, but would prefer being an only dog. Provolone is available for adoption from Grand Strand Humane Society. (WBTW)

  • MyHorryNews has put together a list of five entertainment picks on the Grand Strand. From romantic symphony performances, to wine tasting, learning how a farm works, and taking a polar plunge to help shelter pets, there's something here for everybody. (Myhorrynews)

  • The Humane Society of North Myrtle Beach: Drum roll, please!! Thank you to our amazing community for helping us make 2021 a PAWsome year. There were many days that our team of staff and volunteers cried out of sheer frustration and exhaustion this past year, but we never gave up! (Facebook)

  • On January 17th, the late Betty White would have turned 100 years old. She died on New Year's Eve and wasn't able to celebrate her 100th birthday. Volunteers at the Humane Society of North Myrtle Beach are participating in the nationwide event called The Betty White Challenge on January 17th. Donate to the HSNMB or the shelter of your choice to participate and remember animal advocate Betty White. (WIS10)

  • Greyson Winfield is nine years old, and he was awarded the Gator Good Doers award by the Gator Morning Show on Friday. Why? Because of his dedication to his Horry County community. Greyson does free yard work for veterans, first responders, seniors, single mothers, and disabled community members. Greyson is accepting donations to help with his lawn equipment. (wpde.com)

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Alrighty, you're all good for Sunday, folks! See you Monday morning to kick off your week in Myrtle Beach style!

Kathy Mandell

About me: The best decision I ever made was relocating to the Myrtle Beach area from New England a few years ago, with my three dogs and three cats. I enjoy dogs, cats, road trips, photography, writing, vegetarian food, live music, bicycling and above all my daily walks on the beaches in and around the Grand Strand.

This article originally appeared on the Myrtle Beach Patch

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