Mashpee Annual Town Meeting to be Held Outdoors

MASHPEE – The Mashpee select board recently discussed the prospect of holding the special and annual town meetings set for May entirely outdoors as COVID case numbers surge across the region. 

“We are at D-day. We need to make a decision and make sure it’s anchored down,” said Town Manager Rodney Collins. 

Collins said that the town was pursuing a hybrid model, with both indoor and outdoor options via a tent and plenty of social distance.

With rising COVID cases, the board considered other options for the annual town meeting, with Collins offering a completely outside option utilizing a large tent. 

“I have been advised that is doable and that we could work out the logistics.”

He said an open-air tent hosting the meeting entirely outdoors was the most feasible option, and with the May 3 date approaching selectmen agreed.

With the town’s residents not all fully vaccinated against the coronavirus yet, Selectmen Andrew Gottlieb said an even partially-indoor town meeting may discourage residents from attending.

“I think that there are people that want to come that are going to feel like ‘I’ve made it this far, I’ve been able to hopefully maintain my health, and I’m really reluctant to go inside a week or ten days from being fully vaccinated’ and not want to take the risk,” said Gottlieb. 

“I think we have to go with that recommendation. It’s the right thing to do for the most number of people and we should try and do it.”

The outdoor annual town meeting scheduled for May 3 was unanimously agreed upon by select board members. 

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native currently living in Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the News Center in 2019.
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