Wednesday, October 21, 2020
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As of Oct. 22, Grand County is reporting “high” transmission levels of COVID-19 according to the Utah Department of Health along with 20 other Utah counties as the statewide spike in coronavirus cases continues. The county was previously considered "moderate."

Friday, October 16, 2020

There’s a chill in the air and trees are sporting their autumn gold, and we’re all ready for some Halloween fun. But in the age of COVID-19, with so many of life’s traditions on hold or modified, it can be unclear what Halloween activities will – or should – be happening this year. We want t…

Everything is different this year – but “different” can still be really fun. Fortunately for all of us, there are several pandemic-safe holiday events coming up including the Moab Valley Multicultural Center’s Day of the Dead, a Spooky Moab Story Hour on KZMU in partnership with the Grand Co…

Local and state officials are waving a flag of alarm about a recent surge of COVID-19 cases in Utah. On Oct. 13, the Utah Department of Health reported 987 more cases in the state and estimated 22,174 total active cases statewide — doubling Utah’s total cases in the past month.

Thursday, October 08, 2020

After a lull in recorded positive cases of COVID-19 in Grand County, the Southeast Utah Health Department reported a sudden uptick since Oct. 4, impacting staff within local government and health agencies as well as students within the Grand County School District.

Thursday, September 24, 2020
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Correction: an earlier version of this article had the incorrect location for the poetry slam event Spit Love. The correct location is Star Hall (159 E. Center St.). 

Schools opened on Aug. 20 in San Juan County after detailed preparations to accommodate students in their Mountain Region (including Monticello and Blanding) and River Region ( including Monument Valley, Montezuma Creek, Navajo Mountain and other areas on the Navajo Nation).

Street addresses are rare on the Navajo Nation. Since most residents live off of the main roads, visitors usually follow directions based on mile markers or the surrounding desert landscape to find where they’re going, whether the destination is a modern home or a traditional hogan.

Friday, September 18, 2020

Across Utah, more attention is being put on sewage than ever before. Since the spring, the Utah Department of Environmental Quality has been tracking the spread of COVID-19 in communities by surveying wastewater samples. Last week, Moab’s sample showed the highest spike yet of COVID-19 altho…

Friday, September 11, 2020
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On Sept. 8, United States Rep. John Curtis visited Moab’s City Council Chambers for a town hall meeting. The representative for Utah’s 3rd Congressional District, which extends from Provo all the way through San Juan County, took questions and comments regarding the Equal Rights Amendment, p…

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Though emergency calls have increased, funding for local EMS services has remained stagnant. Over the last few weeks, the Grand County Emergency Medical Services Special Service District has begun sending emergency medical technicians to fight the various wildfires in Utah and Colorado to he…

Thursday, September 03, 2020

From implementing sanitization procedures to devising foot-traffic patterns, schools in Moab have been preparing nonstop for the 2020-21 academic year in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Moab Charter School and the Grand County School District, which will open on Sept. 8, shared metic…

Thursday, August 27, 2020
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At the Aug. 25 meeting of the Moab City Council, council members and staff examined financial data prepared by Moab City Finance Director Klint York that showed how intense the impact of the COVID-19 shutdowns was on local sales.

Friday, August 21, 2020
Thursday, August 13, 2020

There’s an ongoing pandemic, an economic recession and – heaven help us – it’s an election year. We could all use some techniques to reduce stress and improve our wellness – like yoga.

“The scriptures teach us to not look after your own interest, but that of others,” said Canyonlands Fellowship Church Pastor Geoff Thomas. “It’s with that attitude that we have tried to gather as a church and maintain our relationship as the body of Christ.”

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Growing up in the Navajo Nation, Cynthia Wilson learned the art of rug-weaving from her mother, which she in turn learned from her own mother beneath the towering buttes of Monument Valley — “Tsé Biiʼ Ndzisgaii” in Navajo. Rug-weaving is rooted in Navajo creation narratives, from using the l…

Monday, August 10, 2020
Friday, August 07, 2020

At the Aug. 4 meeting of the Grand County Council, Moab Regional Hospital Chief Executive Officer Jen Sadoff and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Dylan Cole reported that the hospital has administered 3,227 tests for COVID-19.

The Utah High School Activities Association announced on July 28 that fall sports are on track to proceed as scheduled, which means the Grand County High School Red Devils will compete in interscholastic competition for the first time since March. The boys golf team will compete on Aug. 12 a…

Thursday, August 06, 2020
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County Administrator Chris Baird gave a brief update on the county’s finances at the Grand County Council meeting on Aug. 4, commending county departments for successfully cutting their budgets down by 20 to 25%.

Friday, July 31, 2020
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At their regular meeting on July 28, the Moab City Council discussed two policy changes being crafted by city staff: a temporary avenue for local restaurants to create outdoor dining areas and a formal procedure for collecting public input on proposed uses of city property.

As the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the United States this spring, many industries slowed to a crawl and unemployment rates spiked. Many retail stores shut their doors and laid off employees, unsure of when they would be able to reopen, legally or ethically. Many outdoor equipment manufact…

As the nationwide debate over the reopening of schools rages, residents and school officials are trying to come up with plans that meet the needs of local families.

A report released on July 21 by investigative journalism nonprofit Propublica revealed how politics, rather than public health policy, steered Utah’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and made special mention of Grand County. The article, written by journalists Lisa Song and Mollie Simon, ma…

Thursday, July 23, 2020
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Schools in the Grand County school district will reopen for in-person learning on Tuesday, Sept. 8 with a host of additional hygiene measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among students, teachers and their families. However, as in districts across the country, concerns remain about how …

Business closures and reduced tourism have hit Grand County’s economy hard, with unemployment rates among the highest in Utah. Lost wages, added to the region’s high cost of housing, led many to worry about covering their rent beginning in April. For many in the community, federally boosted …

To adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic, Utah State University announced they will offer multiple ways for students to return for the fall semester, including traditional face-to-face classes, online classes, and options that combine a bit of both. The semester begins on August 31.

Friday, July 17, 2020
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The state of Utah added ten more confirmed deaths from COVID-19 on July 14, adding to the growing evidence of a surge of positive cases in the state. Locally, Grand County has reported its first hospitalization of a resident as cases grew to 28 positives, with 18 people considered recovered.

Zion National Park reopened on May 13 without its shuttle service. Instead, the National Park Service relied on the 400 parking spaces along the scenic drive to serve visitors going to iconic trails like Angels Landing and The Narrows.

Southeast Utah Health Department Environmental Health Director Orion Rogers receives a swab for COVID-19 during a free mobile testing event put on by the department on July 14. [Murice D. Miller / Moab Sun News]

The Grand Conservation District announced an award to Moab’s Youth Garden Project to support the area nonprofit’s attempts to address food security during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While Moab Regional Hospital has instituted safety procedures for all staff, patients and visitors to protect against the spread of COVID-19, standard hospital services are also being offered including skin screenings, sports physicals and expanded oncology services.

Thursday, July 16, 2020
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School districts across Utah are revealing their reopening plans for the fall, negotiating public health concerns and the needs of parents and students. The Grand County School District approved its proposed plan for the 2020-2021 school year on July 15, aiming to reopen schools for in-perso…

Friday, July 10, 2020

COVID-19 case numbers have stayed low in Grand County, but some local residents know the dangers of the illness all too well. Don Wiseman, a Moab resident, caught the virus while working as a ski instructor this winter in Crested Butte, Colorado.

Free testing for COVID-19 will be available on July 14 from 2 to 6 p.m. at the Southeast Utah Health Department offices (575 S. Kane Creek Blvd., Moab) through mobile units from the Utah Public Health Lab. Advance registration is strongly recommended and a mask must be worn.

Wednesday, July 08, 2020
Friday, July 03, 2020
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The Grand County Council voted to recommend that the public be required to wear masks in indoor public places to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the county.

Public health officials are raising concerns that voluntarily-enforced policies aren’t enough to contain the spread of COVID-19 amid record-setting spikes in positive tests in Utah and across the southwest.

Thursday, July 02, 2020
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Utah Governor Gary Herbert approved a request by Grand County officials that the public be required to wear masks in indoor public places to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the county. 

Thursday, June 25, 2020
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According to the Centers for Disease Control, two of the best things to prevent catching COVID-19 are regular hand washing and staying home. But what if you have to drive miles down a dirt road to a communal water source just to get the water you need?

Utah Governor Gary Herbert has rejected the recommendations of the state epidemiologist and others, vowing that he will not reintroduce public health restrictions despite the increased spread of COVID-19 in the state.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Scientists have devised a new way of tracking the spread of COVID-19 in our communities: examining the sewers.

How does one advertise in a slow economy with a nonexistent budget? The Grand County Council and the Moab Area Travel Council discussed that issue at the regular council meeting on June 16. The council also discussed an application for a development in Spanish Valley, a planned campground in…

Thursday, June 11, 2020

On a normal spring break morning in Moab, brightly colored rafts bob down the Colorado River with guide services’ logos emblazoned on their sides. A few miles away guided parties stack ropes in the pre-dawn light below climbing routes in Castle Valley. In town, shuttle services rack bikes on…

For years, health care providers have been looking for ways to connect residents in rural areas to medical providers in simpler and less expensive ways. One of the effects of the coronavirus pandemic was to quickly speed up adoption of one of those options: telehealth, or health care service…

Friday, June 05, 2020
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Hayley Knouff was born and raised in Moab. Just a year and half ago, she decided to buy a business in the city.

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Governor Gary Herbert moved Moab to “low-risk” public health restrictions along with the majority of the state on May 29, rejecting requests from local government and public health officials for modifications and despite a growing number of COVID-19 cases in the area.