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How is rise in the Omicron variant impacting the state’s tourism?

Published: Jan. 7, 2022 at 6:49 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Big tech companies are pulling out of the biggest annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas due to the rise in COVID numbers.

The tourism industry there is now taking a big hit. But what will the resurgence mean for Mississippi tourism?

“As of now, all of our events are going forward as scheduled,” said Yolanda Clay-Moore.

The Visit Jackson Communications Director said the agency is working closely with each event to insure safe environments for attendees. The Dixie National Rodeo and the Mississippi Blues Marathon are on pace for a return.

“We stay connected with the medical community,” said Clay-Moore. “We had a COVID task force meeting this week just to get abreast of what are the recommendations now and how we can move forward safely.”

The state’s tourism industry began rebounding this year.

“We have not seen that affect here,” said Gloria Frey.

The Director of Conventions Sales with the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center said the rise in COVID cases is having a minimal impact. Average attendance was over 400,000 in 2019, numbers dropped during the height of the pandemic, bouncing back to 360,000 in 2021.

“We’re prepared either way. We’ve been in this 20 months so far,” said Frey. “I think the general consensus is even though it is a resurgence, it’s not as bad as the Delta variant was.”

This weekend the Coast Coliseum hosts the Professional Cowboy Rodeo Association Finals. Reba McEntire performs there in February 25.

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