UPDATE: (August 12, 2016) According to a news release issued by the Wynwood Yard, a third employee was found to be Zika-positive. The Yard learned this after receiving some aggregate numbers from the Department of Health after it tested a group of more than 65 employees last Thursday, August 4. All three employees are part of the same group that was tested last week. The Wynwood Yard reports that all employees are doing well and that management is awaiting more test results.
UPDATE: (August 11, 2016) According to a news release issued by the Wynwood Yard, an additional employee tested positive for the Zika virus, bringing the total confirmed cases among Yard employees to two.
The second person is part of a group of more than 65 employees that were voluntarily tested for the virus at the Department of Health (DOH) last Thursday. The news release also states that "this does not necessarily mean that there is a new case of Zika in Miami, as our number is likely already reflected in the DOH and CDC’s count for Miami." According to Yard management, all employees are doing well, and there are no new suspected cases of transmission.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states Zika can be transmitted through a mosquito bite, sex, laboratory exposure, or blood transfusion or from a pregnant woman to her unborn child.
Amid all the Zika madness is some good news. Aerial spraying and quick action by Wynwood businesses is working. The Florida Department of Health has cleared a portion of northwest Wynwood of the virus.
Additionally, the Wynwood Yard announced it would reopen today. The outdoor food and entertainment complex has been closed since last Tuesday as part of founder and CEO Della Heiman's extra precautions to shore up the local hot spot against Zika.
“Being closed for this many days definitely had a big impact on our business; however, it is much more important for us to have all of the information we need to ensure that our team members and guests are safe and healthy," Heiman says. "We’ve had a lot of tough decisions to make over the past week in an environment of great uncertainty, but our highest priority was to get more information in order to ensure the health and well-being of our team members and community.”
The Wynwood Yard has implemented stringent new mosquito-mitigation measures, the installation of a state-of-the-art MosquitoNix system, and employee training. The Yard is also supplying insect repellent to all guests who wish to use it.
The Florida Department of Health did not issue any instructions to close the Wynwood Yard and says the venue's reopening is a business decision. Coincidentally, one team member of the Yard has been confirmed positive for Zika, and the Department of Health was contacted to offer voluntary testing for all staffers.
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With the reopening comes a series of events, including Della Test Kitchen customer-appreciation day this Saturday. From 4 to 6 p.m., the vegan food truck will offer complimentary samples of new menu items such as the dalé bowl (made with brown rice, chipotle tofu, refried black beans, cashew queso, kale, pico de gallo, pepitas, and verde sauce), mamey custard, and a spiced cacao frappé. There will also be family activities and team-member-led demos. Guests can register for this free event on Facebook.
From 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday, the Art of Food & Music, in collaboration with III Points, will offer a Latin-themed night featuring live DJs, art, and food.
To see a list of all the anti-Zika precautions the Wynwood Yard is taking, visit thewynwoodyard.com.