The Williamson County Sun


Covid-19 Numbers


Location Cases Deaths
Williamson 46,882 482
Bell 24,857 441
Travis 84,104 873
Texas 2,977,706 51,936
U.S. 33,470,367 599,928

Wilco Status Report


Williamson County numbers are updated once per week every Monday, or Tuesday following a holiday.

 

County Breakout

Status
Total cases 46,882
  Confirmed cases  39,781
 Additional Probable cases 7,101
New confirmed cases 86
Deaths 482
Fullly Vaccinated 53.64%
  Vaccinated one dose 64.79%
Hospital beds available 636
% hospital beds avail. 16%
ICU beds available 53
% ICU beds avail. 12%
GA-32 Total TSA % 2.09%
Phase (Moderate spread) Yellow
  • To move from Yellow (Moderate Community Spread) to Green (Minimal Community Spread) phase:
  • • the incidence rate needs to be below 1.1 for 14 consecutive days. 
  • • The positive test rate needs to be below 5% for 14 consecutive days.
  • • The GA-32 Total TSA rate for Region O needs to be decreasing for 14 consecutive days.
  • • Although Williamson County is in Yellow Phase/Moderate Transmission, WCCHD strongly encourages vaccination, social and physical distancing, wearing a mask, and washing your hands. This will keep transmission low, and help us move from Yellow to Green.

 

Cases by City

City C Δ
Georgetown 8,506 +7
Round Rock 10,775 -23
Hutto 2,962 +1
Cedar Park 3,035 -3
Leander 3,429 +2
Austin (in wilco) 3,831 +4
Other towns 5,399 +11
Age Group
Age C Δ
Under 5 763 -3
5 to 10 1,561 -8
11 to 13 1,085 -17
14 to 17 1,987 -16
18 to 30 9,399 -110
31 to 40 7,097 -66
41 to 50 6,847 -44
51 to 60 5,202 -22
61 to 70 2,967 -21
71 to 80 1,710 -20
81 and over 1,163 -2

  C=Confirmed Cases
  Δ=Change

*Available Hospital beds, ICU beds and ventilators includes all units in Williamson County.

Deaths by Age Group
Age Total Δ
18-50 20 --
51-60 53 +2
61-70 75 --
71-80 130 --
81+ 204 --

 

June 14 | 4:20 pm

Definitions

Sources: Williamson Co. Health Dept.

 


The Guide to Georgetown

The Guide to Georgetown


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Coronavirus testing

Wilco residents can go to wilco.org/coronavirus to schedule a drive-thru test at one of the testing locations. Individuals must first fill out an online assessment and then wait for a call from the facility within 48 hours to schedule an appointment.


Public meetings

• Georgetown school board:
regular session,
7 p.m. Monday,
Hammerlun Center,
East University Ave.
Watch at georgetownisd.org

• Commissioners Court:
regular weekly session,
9:30 a.m. Tuesday,
county courthouse,
710 S. Main St.
Watch at wilco.org

• City Council: Tuesday,
519 W. Ninth St.,
3 p.m. workshop and
6 p.m. meeting,
second and fourth Tuesday.
Watch at georgetown.org/gtv

 

A day of Sertoma Club 4th of July holiday activities in 2013 comes to a close with a fireworks display at San Gabriel Park. Sun archive photo.


City fireworks will return this Independence Day

 

It may have been touch and go for a time, but there will be fireworks over San Gabriel Park this Fourth of July at dusk.

 

The annual event thrown by the Georgetown Sertoma Club was canceled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and almost suffered the same fate this year when Sertoma and the City of Georgetown made the decision to cancel several months ago.

 

However, because of the improved conditions of the pandemic and wide-spread vaccination, the Sertoma Club and city announced Wednesday that they will indeed be bringing the show back.

 

Fireworks will be set off around 9:15 p.m. on Sunday, July 4, over San Gabriel Park. This will be the 38th year for the event. 

 

The event will be smaller than in the past. Due to the short notice to organize, the Independence Day celebration will be without the city’s usual parade, food trucks, and vendors. 

 

The fireworks are launched from the McMaster Athletic Fields on North College Street, and can be viewed at various spots around town for those wishing to avoid the crowd at the park. 

 

It is against city ordinance to set off personal fireworks. Due to the fireworks fall zone, North College Street will be closed Sunday, July 4, from about 9-11 p.m. between the traffic circle and Holly Street. Parking, standing, or sitting along that segment of North College Street will not be permitted during this time.


Faith in Action hosts exhibit, 
Q&A with local veterans

 

A man leans on a cane in front of a bookshelf

Ernie Columbus is 101 and enjoyed a sky-diving event to celebrate his recent birthday. He was one of the first to join the newly created U. S. Air Force in 1947.

By ELLEN GREENEY

 

Faith in Action has been a stalwart and faithful part of the Georgetown community for two decades. 

 

The organization is marking its 20th anniversary this year with a month-long exhibit and a special event on July 1.

The July exhibit is titled “Portraits of Independence” and features professional portraits of 12 senior clients, several who have served their country.  

 

All of these seniors are over the age of 80 and a few are over 100. They have experienced life like few others and have stories to share; heroes from WWII, the Vietnam War, and a French Legion of Honor medal recipient. 

Three of the honorees include sky-diver Ernie Columbus, age 101, and Virginia Anderson and Grover Trytten, both 100.

 

“Our seniors have lived an impressive span of eight decades and some even ten decades,” said Vickie Orcutt, Faith in Action executive director. “It’s important for our community to understand vibrant aging.”

 

You can view the portraits and hear from these heroes during the “Portraits of Independence” event, Thursday, July 1, at Lamppost Coffee, located on South Main Street in downtown Georgetown. A VIP coffee reception will begin at 4 p.m., followed by a general admission Q&A with Mr. Columbus and Mr. Trytten at 5:30 p.m., and a wine and cheese reception. 

 

Tickets start at $35 for VIP access, $25 for general admission and $10 for children ages 12 and under. Seating is limited. 

 

Tickets for the family-friendly “Portraits of Independence” event are available at FaithInActionGT.org/events or by calling the office at 512-868-9544 for more information. 

 

All proceeds benefit Faith in Action’s supportive services for seniors. 

This event is one of several fundraisers taking place as part of the organization’s 20th anniversary.

 

Faith in Action Georgetown is a non-profit organization helping seniors maintain their independence and quality of life by  providing transportation and other support services free of charge. 

 

“Faith in Action has been very helpful to me when I’ve needed to get my macular degeneration shots,” Mr. Trytten said. “I’m very grateful for them.”

The volunteer organization grew from Georgetown Interfaith Caregivers, which began in 2000 with start-up funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Today, the organization has evolved to include support by 16 partner churches, as well as corporate partnerships, grants and private donations. 

 

Ride scheduling and sharing services increased in 2018 with the addition of the Go-Van-Go Program and a 14-passenger van offering group grocery trips and social outings.


Critique planned I-35 improvements between Round Rock and Georgetown

 

A map of I-35 with a section between 1431 and 2243.

By NICHOLAS CICALE

 

The Texas Department of Transportation will upgrade 4.4 miles of Interstate 35 in Williamson County from Georgetown’s Southeast Inner Loop to Ranch to Market Road 1431.

 

The project will construct a new Westinghouse Road bridge over the interstate. Interstate 35 intersections at Westinghouse Road and SE Inner Loop will also be revised and enhanced, as will area service roads and ramps. 

“Improvements to this area are needed to address traffic backups that occur on the main lanes, frontage roads and cross-street intersections, and to enhance safety throughout the corridor,” TxDOT documents state. 

 

Residents interested in commenting on the changes can do so during an ongoing virtual open house that launched Friday and will stay active through June 26. 

 

The virtual event includes a prerecorded presentation and allows access to maps and project information. Comments can be left online at seinnerloop.mobility35openhouse.com.

 

The project is still in its environmental study and design phases. Construction could begin in 2024, with an estimated cost of $107 million, TxDOT said.


A bunch of people hang out in the water at Blue Hole.

Georgetown residents pack into Blue Hole Park to swim while enjoying the sunshine and hot temperature Wednesday, June 26.  Photo by Nicholas Cicale

 

Heatwave hits Wilco


By NICHOLAS CICALE

 

A month of above average rainfall in May was followed by below average temperatures in early June. Now, Georgetown is in the midst of the year’s first summer heatwave. 

High temperatures in Georgetown have topped 90 degrees each day since June 9, and are forecast by the National Weather Service to remain above 90 degrees through Monday.

 

From June 11-17, the high temperature in Georgetown was 3.8 degrees higher than the historic average. Temperatures peaked at 97 degrees in Georgetown Monday, with the “feels-like” temperature reaching 105 degrees, according to the weather gage at the Georgetown Municipal Airport. 

 

Just south in Austin, temperatures reached 100 degrees Monday for the first time in 2021. The milestone was hit a few weeks early this year, with the first 100 degree day usually taking place on July 4, according to the National Weather Service. 

   

Early advertising deadline

 

The Sun office will be closed on Friday, July 2. Reserve space for the Sunday, July 4 paper by Noon on Wednesday, June 30.


Lake Georgetown no longer under drought classification 

 

By NICHOLAS CICALE

 

The drought status of Lake Georgetown was lifted by the Brazos River Authority Wednesday for the first time since November. 

Water levels at Lake Georgetown, which had been under Stage 1 Drought Status restrictions, have increased by six feet in recent weeks due to rain in May and early June, according to the river authority. 

Stage 1, the lowest of four drought stages, is triggered when pumping by the Williamson County Regional Raw Water Line is required and sustained for six months to maintain lake levels at the Lake Georgetown reservoir. Pumping at the lake was discontinued June 3, the river authority said. 

Georgetown residents are still required to follow City of Georgetown water restrictions when it comes to watering and conservation. The river authority also advised households to use water wisely and to conserve when possible this summer.

As of Thursday, Lake Georgetown was 88 percent full, compared to 69 percent one month prior and 70 percent this time last year. 

The reservoir was storing 32,585 acre-feet of water Thursday, compared to 25,928 one year ago.


Juneteenth celebration

An in-person Juneteenth panel will be held June 19, from noon to 1 p.m. at 801 West Street, near the Shotgun House, a restored 1920s-era home that serves as a “living history” museum. The keynote speaker will be Wesley Jarmon, a retired administrator for the Federal Communications Commission and founder of the Ernest Everett Just Foundation. The program is part of The Georgetown Cultural Citizen Memorial Association’s Juneteenth Celebration. 12 p.m., June 19


2021 Texas
Bach Festival is
‘Bach for More’

By KATHERINE ANTHONY

 

Classical music lovers are poised to enjoy the return of the Texas Bach Festival, June 23-27. Cancelled in 2020 due to Covid-19, this year’s festival is appropriately dubbed “Bach for More.”

Concert dates are June 23-27 and all performances will be live streamed free of charge, said Barry Williamson, the festival's founder and artistic director.

To live stream the festival, viewers should subscribe to the Texas Bach Festival mailing list.

Subscribers will receive the live stream link.

The final concert on June 27 can also be attended in person at St. Martin’s Lutheran Church, 606 West 15th Street in Austin. Tickets are $20 at the door. Audience members are asked to wear masks.

Georgetown has been home to the Texas Bach Festival since its inaugural season in 2017. Mr. Williamson said the TBF is currently the only classical music festival in Central Texas and that it draws outstanding professional musicians, choristers and vocal soloists.

“We’re excited to be here. For the past year and a half, concerts weren’t happening. Carefully, live music is coming back,” he said.

TBF presented two live streamed concerts earlier this year that drew about 600 viewers. Mr. Williamson said he is hoping to resume fully live and with ticketed performances in 2022.

The 2021 TBF program includes:

June 23, 8 p.m., Bach & Friends
David Polley, organist, Grace Episcopal Church, Georgetown
Music of Bach, Philip Moore, Oskar Lindberg and Niels Gade

June 24, 8 p.m. Chamber Music 1, Beauty in Simplicity
Artisan Quartet, St. Martin’s Lutheran Church, Austin
Music of Haydn, Barber and Dvorak

June 25, 8 p.m., Chamber Music 2/Mixed, Bach to the Romantics
Toby Blumenthal, piano; Patrice Calixte, violin; Bruce Williams, viola; Tim O’Brien, baritone, St. Martin’s Lutheran Church
Music of Bach, Beethoven and Brahms

June 26, 8 p.m., Appassionata
Angelo Ferrari, tenor; Rick Rowley, piano, St. Martin’s Lutheran Church
Music of Bach, Handel, Donizetti, Rossini, Puccini, Verdi and others

June 27, 3 p.m., J.S. Bach St. Matthew’s Passion
Texas Bach Festival Choir, Barry Scott Williamson, conductor; Rick Rowley, piano, St. Martin’s Lutheran Church
Excerpted recitatives, arias, chorales, and choruses from Bach’s rarely-heard monumental sacred masterpiece 

Mr. Williamson said this version of St. Matthew’s Passion will be a world premiere and the piece’s first Central Texas performance in 20 years.

Full information about the Texas Bach Festival, including performer bios, can be found at

www.texasbachfestival.org