This article is updated multiple times a day with coronavirus news from Colorado Springs, the Pikes Peak region and elsewhere in Colorado. Click here to sign up for our daily coronavirus newsletter. If you're not already a full Gazette subscriber, click here for options.


The latest around Colorado

THURSDAY

-The Air Force Academy has canceled spring sports and CHSAA announced late Thursday night that the remainder of games in the state basketball tournaments would not be played because of coronavirus concerns. Read more here.   

-17 Pikes Peak-area school districts, as well as the School for the Deaf and the Blind,  Pikes Peak BOCES, and Colroado Springs Colorado Early Colleges have announced closures starting Monday.  During the closure from March 16-27, schools, district facilities, and buses will undergo additional deep cleanings with hospital-grade disinfectants. For many students, the closures mean spring break will begin a week earlier and last two weeks instead of one. Read more here

-The ENT Center for the Arts has canceled or postponed all performances scheduled through April 30. Some events at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center have also been canceled

-The Church of Latter-day Saints, which has congregations in Colorado Springs, announced Thursday that gatherings worldwide are suspended. 

- 15 new presumptive positive cases of the coronavirus were confirmed by the Colorado Department of Public Health on Thursday, bringing the total number in the state to 48. Eleven cases were reported in the morning and four more late in the afternoon by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. The latest four were reported from Eagle County - one male in his 20s, two females in their 30s and one male in his 80s. None of the new cases are in El Paso County. Read more here.

- Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers, while announcing the postponement of the St. Patrick's Day Parade until September, said "folks there is no reason to panic." Read more here on what was planned.

- In response to the ongoing coronavirus, CHSAA suspended all spring sports and activities until April 6. This includes baseball, girls' golf, boys' and girls' lacrosse, girls' soccer, boys' swimming and diving, girls' tennis and track and field. Read more here.

- Academy District 20 announced Wednesday it's restricting all school- and district-sponsored travel through April 15, and the restriction may be extended further. In a letter to parents, the district said this does not apply to personal travel, through such travel could result in a student or staff member being refused admittance to school for up to two weeks upon return. Students appearing to be sick may not be allowed to attend school, and the district may mandate a quarantine beyond the Center for Disease Control's recommended length, the letter states.

District 11 also sent a letter, stating that parents of immune-compromised students may keep them home for the duration of the governor's state of emergency, if they choose. Parents of all children may keep their children home for up to two weeks, the letter added.

- Pikes Peak Community College is moving its spring break for in-person classes up one week; it is now set to begin Monday, according to a Thursday letter from college president Dr. Lance Bolton. Faculty and staff should report during that week and will prepare to shift as many classes as possible to online instruction beginning March 30, according to the letter.

- Several events around the state have been canceled due to concerns over the spread of coronavirus. They include:

  • The 19th annual Frozen Dead Guy Days, set for Thursday through Sunday in Nederland.
  • "A Knight at the Theater," set for Friday at the Knights of Columbus Hall at Pikes Peak Library District.
  • Olde Town Arvada St. Patrick's Day Festival, set for Saturday in Arvada.
  • The St. Patrick's Day Parade, set for 9:30 a.m. Saturday in Denver.
  • Moonlight Market Art Fair, set for Saturday at the Knights of Columbus Hall at Pikes Peak Library District.

 - A University of Colorado at Colorado Springs student has met the criteria to be screened for the coronavirus and is awaiting results of the test, campus spokesman Jared Verner said Thursday. Read more here.

- Mountain Metro Transit is cleaning its vehicles every day with hospital-grade disinfectants, one of several proactive steps being taken by Pikes Peak region public agencies to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Read more here.

- The Space Symposium has suffered a blow with travel restrictions ordered by the White House in response to coronavirus. A ban that begins Friday cuts out a slew of European nations that planned to send delegations to the annual space gathering, set to begin March 30 at The Broadmoor. Read more here.

- The United States Air Force Academy is closing to visitors beginning Friday at 5 p.m. The academy said the closure is a precautionary measure in response to the rapid spread of the coronavirus. Read more here.

- The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is NOT currently recommending that schools or child care facilities proactively close unless they have a confirmed case of COVID-19. Read more here.


WEDNESDAY RECAP:

- Sixteen more presumptive cases of coronavirus in Colorado were announced on Wednesday, bringing the state's total to 33, including one previously identified in El Paso County. Read more here.

- Gov. Jared Polis warned that it "will get worse before it gets better." Read more here.

- World Health Organization labeled the virus's spread a pandemic on the same day Colorado's case number grew. Read more here.

- President Donald Trump delivered a somber Oval Office address announcing strict rules on travel from much of Europe to begin this weekend. The State Department followed with an extraordinary warning to Americans to “reconsider travel abroad” as well. Read more here.

- The Air Force Academy joined the growing list of institutions shutting down athletic events to spectators as a result of the coronavirus. “In unprecedented times like this we have to think about safety first,” athletic director Nathan Pine tweeted on Wednesday night. Read more here.

- The NCAA announced that it is banning fans from its March Madness basketball tournaments and other winter sport tournaments. Read more here. And here. 

- The NBA has suspended its season “until further notice" after Utah Jazz player Rudy Gorbert tested positive for the coronavirus, a move that came only hours after the majority of the league's owners were leaning toward playing games without fans in arenas. Read more here.

- Colleges in Colorado — including UCCS, CU-Boulder and Colorado College — announced modifications to the delivery of classes and the cancellation of events. Read more here. And here.

- A Big Dance without fans? Columnist Paul Klee gives his thoughts. Read more here.

Also:

More full coverage of coronavirus in Colorado.

MAP: A look at cases in Colorado.

Coronavirus vs. the flu: Similar symptoms and the differences.

Q&A: What we know and what we don't know about COVID-19.

The Associated Press and Gazette reporters contributed to this report.

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