Game Day in Green Bay: Empty Sports Bars, Full Hospitals

on Oct26
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At Cropsey’s on State, Carol Gezella, who used to own the place — her son does now — said she feels “pretty safe” despite the virus spike, but that she was worried about the governor’s orders.

“We’re going to do whatever we can to stay open,” she said.

Though rural areas and small metropolitan regions have seen some of the worst outbreaks in recent weeks, many large cities are now struggling as well. The counties that include Chicago, Oklahoma City, Minneapolis, Anchorage and El Paso all set single-day records on Saturday. Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas asked federal officials to open an Army medical center at Fort Bliss to civilian patients to help ease the strain on El Paso’s hospitals.

And, whether in big cities or small towns, health experts warn that the country is heading into the worst surge in cases yet.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, a former F.D.A. commissioner, said in a Sunday appearance on the CBS program “Face the Nation” that the United States is at a “dangerous tipping point.”

“These cases are going to continue to build,” Dr. Gottlieb said. “There’s really no backstop here. I don’t see forceful policy intervention happening any time soon.”

Still, some Packers fans found hope in their team’s legacy.

Tom Wartick is a lifelong Packers fan whose daughter got married on the field. On Sunday, he was taking pictures along Lombardi Avenue, named after Vince Lombardi, the legendary Packers coach whose statue stands outside Lambeau Stadium. Mr. Wartick said he felt a true fan’s sense of uplift.

“Vince Lombardi said it’s OK to get knocked down — it’s not OK to stay down,” said Mr. Wartick, 63. “And it’s the same thing with this Covid virus. It’s a little intimidating, but we’ve got to keep moving forward with life.”

Lucy Tompkins contributed reporting from New York and Mitch Smith from Chicago.

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