Festivals bring mask-less faces as CDC guidance opens up for vaccinated Kentuckians

Updated: May. 15, 2021 at 4:57 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Sunshine, music and a serious lack of facial coverings, as people took advantage of the CDC’s lifted mask guidance for those who are vaccinated.

“They’re all talking about how nice it is to be out in the fresh air, among other people,” vendor Glenda Hepp said. “They’re just visiting and shopping.”

For 17 years, Hepp has been creating glass creations. She and her husband hike around the Kentucky region selling them.

This is their first show in more than a year after COVID shut everything down.

“We had no idea it would take this long to get back to the public,” Hepp said.

More than one thousand people were expected to attend the inaugural Paristown Flea, a flea market event that’s the first of many to follow.

It’s scheduled to be held the third Saturday of the month, all the way through October.

“It’s great it’s nice to be outside and see people enjoying themselves,” vendor Tracy Neafus said.

Neafus is the owner of Elderberry and Co. She said events like this are nice for small businesses so they can make up for money loss during the pandemic.

“Support local, always support local and be kind,” Neafus said. “Be patient with people still.”

It wasn’t just in Paristown people were enjoying their newfound freedoms. Norton Commons hosted its annual Arts Festival, which was canceled last year because of the pandemic.

The hope is that the 4500 people expected to attend on Saturday and Sunday would pump money back into the artisan scene.

For festival-goer Susan Harper, she said it’s going to take a time getting used to attending events like these with no masks.

“It’s amazing, not going to lie,” Harper said. “I’m a little apprehensive because no one is wearing a mask.”

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