CONCORD — New Hampshire’s Division of Travel and Tourism Development is emphasizing that visitors to the state this fall “Know Before You Go” online with regard to coronavirus-related requirements and restrictions.
Visitors can educate themselves while looking at the fall foliage tracker and at suggested scenic drives in the state, Lori Harnois, director of the division, said during a meeting on fall tourism hosted by U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan on Monday.
Another campaign in the works is “Leave No Trace” to honor New Hampshire’s natural resources and be responsible travelers, Harnois said. This summer, New Hampshire received its share of visitors who wanted to take advantage of parks, forests, and other outdoor destinations. However, some also left an increase of roadside trash.
In spite of the visitors, it’s been a difficult season for the travel and tourism industry, with many events and planned excursions, such as leaf-peeper bus tours, canceled.
Paula Kinney, the executive coordinator of Androscoggin Valley Chamber of Commerce, said the ATV season has taken off well, but also emphasized that a lot of people are “trashing the place.”
She said another problem is employee retention. “A lot of my restaurants can’t stay open every day anymore. They’re all closing, they’re shortening their hours. We just don’t have employees.”
CJ Haines, executive director of the New Hampshire Brewers Association, said breweries are trying to plan for colder weather and what that means to seating capacity and sales. Breweries also are facing an increased tax on barrels.
The hospitality representatives said they also hoped that the deadline on federal CARES Act relief funds could be extended past December. Hassan has introduced a bill calling for that.
As of Monday, 7,714 people had tested positive for the virus in New Hampshire, an increase of 18 from the previous day. The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in New Hampshire increased over the past two weeks, going from 21 new cases per day on Aug. 30 to 36 new cases per day on Sept. 13.
The total number of cases in Durham dropped to 23, which remains the second highest in the state to Manchester (42). Windham and Hollis both have 22 cases.
Durham’s cases had previously increased to more than 30 as students returned to campus at the University of New Hampshire. UNH reported Monday it has 55 active cases (44 students and 11 faculty/staff members) though not all of them are in Durham. UNH’s data indicates it conducted 27,058 tests from Sept. 6-12 and had 29 positive tests in that time, a positivity rate of .11%.
The number of deaths statewide from the virus remained at 436 with 355 associated with long-term care facilities (about 81% of all cases).
The total number of hospitalizations in the state remained 721 (9.3% of all cases) with seven people currently hospitalized.
There are 291 active identified cases and 6,987 people are confirmed as recovered (about 91% of all cases). There have been 231,816 tests completed.
Of those with complete information among the 18 new cases, there are five people under the age of 18 and the rest are adults with 33% female and 67% male. The new cases are people who reside in Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (3), Belknap (2), Rockingham (2), Grafton (1), Merrimack (1), and Strafford (1) counties, and in the cities of Manchester (4) and Nashua (1). The county of residence is being determined for three new cases.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia or death.
Material for this report was written by Kathy McCormack of the Associated Press.