Several people test positive for COVID after 4th of July party on Michigan lake

"If you were at the Torch Lake Sandbar party over 4th of July weekend, you should monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19,” state health officials warned.
The Fourth of July celebration, where boaters docked on the lake's sandbar and got off their boats to party, drew big crowds.
The Fourth of July celebration, where boaters docked on the lake's sandbar and got off their boats to party, drew big crowds.Getty Images
/ Source: NBC News

Fourth of July partygoers at the Torch Lake Sandbar in northwest Michigan are being encouraged to monitor for symptoms of the coronavirus after several attendees tested posted for COVID-19, the state’s health department said.

“If you were at the Torch Lake Sandbar party over 4th of July weekend, you should monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19,” the Health Department of Northwest Michigan said in a Friday announcement.

The celebration, where boaters docked on the lake's sandbar and got off their boats to party, drew big crowds.

The local health department said another health agency in the state alerted it to “several individuals" who tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, after attending the sandbar party.

Torch Lake, which is near Traverse City, has been placed under the “medium risk” category by the state’s “safe start” map.

Health officials say they are struggling with contact tracing for partygoers who were exposed.

“The positive cases were not able to offer identifying information for all potential contacts and therefore we want to make the public aware that those who attended could be at risk for exposure,” the department said, warning that additional cases might be coming.

Michigan has been one of the states hardest hit by the coronavirus, with almost 70,000 confirmed cases and more than 6,000 deaths. The state’s numbers have declined since their April high, but like many places throughout the U.S., cases are now on the rise once more.

“This situation reminds us of how important it is to take precautions such as avoiding large gatherings whenever possible especially without social distancing and masking,” Lisa Peacock, a health officer with the northwest department, said in a statement.