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What’s closed and canceled in Cumming and Forsyth County
Aquatic Center

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Forsyth County schools, churches, government entities and community groups started to shut down and cancel events late last week after Georgia leaders urged citizens and businesses to take steps to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Here is a list of the most noteworthy closings, cancellations and postponements around Forysth County. Let us know of others you don’t see listed so we can continue to keep the community informed. Send us info to editor@forsythnews.com: 

• Darden Restaurants, which owns notable brands such as LongHorn Steakhouse and Olive Garden, is "closing all of our dining rooms that are permitted to remain open at the close of business today," the company said in a statement Friday, March 20.

• The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta suspended masses through April 5.

YMCA of Metro Atlanta locations are closed as of Tuesday, March 17.

• Starting Wednesday, March 18, all city of Cumming buildings would be closed to the public

• Cumming city officials announced the closing of the Sawnee Association of the Arts’ Art Center at the Brannon Head House indefinitely and the closing of the Cumming Municipal Court through at least Wednesday, April 15.

• The 50,000-student Forsyth County Schools district announced all classes and school-related activities will be canceled through spring break.

• The city of Cumming closed its recreation centers along with the Cumming Aquatic Center. Activities and classes at Cumming City Park and Dobbs Creek Recreation Center were canceled or postponed, including an upcoming arena football game on Sunday, March 22, at the Cumming Fairgrounds.

“We’re just doing what we can do to help keep the community safe,” Cumming Mayor Troy Brumbalow said.

• Forsyth County closed senior centers and recreation centers and postponed several events. Upcoming public information open houses for projects at Matt Community Park on Monday, March 16 and Tuesday, March 17 and Sawnee Mountain Preserve on Thursday, March 26 have been postponed, along with the Great FoCo Clean Up on Saturday, March 21 and the Senior Expo on Saturday, April 18.

Senior and recreation centers are scheduled to reopen Monday, March 30.

“Forsyth County is committed to maintaining a safe and healthy community,” said Forsyth County Board of Commissioners Chairman Laura Semanson in a statement. “After careful consideration, we have made the decision to close these facilities as well as postpone or cancel specific public events with the well-being of our residents in mind. We encourage residents to follow CDC guidelines to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.”

• All branches of the Forsyth County Public Library will be closed March 15-22. In addition, all library programs and meeting room reservations are canceled through March 29.

The library will announce plans for the following week on Friday, March 20.

Hampton Park Library will remain open for advance voting in the March 24 presidential preference primary.

• Several area churches suspended public worship services and moved to online services.

- Cumming First United Methodist Church suspended services for two weeks (March 15 and March 22) and said it will provide an update by Thursday, March 19.

- Browns Bridge Church announced it will have no on-site services for the rest of March.

- First Baptist Church decided to suspend public worship services “until further notice.”

- First Redeemer Church and Mountain Lake Church moved their services today to online.

- Midway United Methodist Church has canceled and postponed all activities through the end of the month or until further notice and moved services online.

- St. Brendan’s the Navigator canceled all youth formation activities through March 27.

- The Church of the Good Shepherd announced regular masses will continue, but all other activities and meetings on its campus from March 14-20 are canceled, as well as the church’s Lenten Penance Service on March 25.

• Forsyth County Chief Judge Jeffrey S. Bagley suspended jury trials in county Superior Court scheduled for March 16-23, according to a press release.

All University System of Georgia institutions, including the University of North Georgia, suspended instruction for two weeks, and students were asked to leave campus by close of business Friday, March 13 and not return until Sunday, March 29.

Lanier Technical College extended its current spring break until Monday, March 23. The college will have online instruction from March 23-28 instead of in-person classes.

The college also restricted student access to on-site services like the school’s library and tutorial services, which will be made available online.