Weekend events juggle large groups and COVID-19 safety

Weekend events take safety precautions for COVID-19

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - As the page is turned to the fall events calendar, this weekend is busy with events up and down the Grand Strand.

Jeep Jam, Surfside United Methodist’s fall festival and the Myrtle Beach Open Disc Golf Tournament are all going on at the same time.

Some of the world’s best disc golfers are on display at the Myrtle Beach Open, landing them right in the chains, but they all had the same obstacle.

Splinter City is a brand new course.

“The depth of field nowadays of the the women who are very talented is much greater than it was back in the beginning," said professional disc golfer Elaine King.

King started her disc golf journey in 1983. The sport has taken her around the world to places like Sweden and Japan, en route to becoming a five-time world champion.

She’ll spend this weekend in Myrtle Beach competing in the Myrtle Beach Open, on the brand new Splinter City Disc Golf Course.

“They’ve nicely laid it out, so that most times you can see the basket, but you can also see the obstacles you have to get to the basket,” said King.

The Myrtle Beach Open serves as the grand opening for the Splinter City disc golf course, where professionals like King will break it in before the park officially opens, likely next month.

It’s the third year of the Myrtle Beach Open, but it’s the first time event coordinators have had to consider the coronavirus.

“They do shotgun starts in disc golf a lot, where everyone kind of goes for it at the same time," said Myrtle Beach Open tournament director Chad Sullivan. "With tournaments now, we do tee times and smaller group sizes, and just making sure everyone is observing social distancing and things like that.”

While 100 professional disc golfers follow those rules as they aim for the chains, more than 100 craft vendors at Surfside United Methodist’s fall festival have safety guidelines of their own.

“We only have vendors outside. When you’re inside our building, we’re asking that you wear a mask to follow that precaution," said UMC fall festival chairperson Anna Henry. "We also are following the other DHEC guidelines because of the exemption we received.”

Those other guidelines include hand sanitizer wherever money is exchanged and social distancing inside.

Jeep Jam has made its way to Myrtle Beach for the third year, giving drivers a chance to roll through an obstacle course or get dirty in the mud pit.

Drivers and riders stay in their cars for both courses, and the rest of the event is outside, so masks aren’t required.

“We can get outside, we can enjoy ourselves, we don’t feel cooped up," said William Trost, who attends Myrtle Beach Jeep Jam every year. "That’s one reason why we’re here.”

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