CHARLESTON — Guidance related to the reopening of pools, bowling alleys and indoor movie theaters will be addressed Thursday, but any decisions related to outdoor fairs and festivals, including the West Virginia State Fair, have not yet been made.

Gov. Jim Justice made those announcements during his press briefing Wednesday afternoon, indicating an opening date for those businesses may be around June 1.

It’s been a matter of making sure the proper protocol, like social distancing, to protect customers can be put into place.

“We are trying to work through all the wickets,” he said, adding the guidelines will be ready Thursday. “We will have that.”

But large outdoor gatherings at fairs and festivals pose more issues, he said, and hopefully some guidance may be announced within the next two weeks.

“We are really trying to digest and buy some time,” he said of seeing how the statistics on the COVID-19 pandemic go. “I would love for us to be able to do all of that, but we have some hard work in front of us to see how things are going … to get there.”

Justice said many rides, acts and concerts must be booked well ahead of time, especially for the large West Virginia State Fair. “I know the dilemma and our people are really working on it.”

The State Fair is slated for mid-August in Fairlea near Lewisburg and draws thousands of visitors every day of its 10-day run from all around the country as well as international visitors.

Contact Charles Boothe at

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