Shaker Woods preps for first weekend with health department approval


Normally, the vendor market attracts upwards of 10,000 people on the grounds -- now it'll be limited to 3,200 people at a time

COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – The three-weekend run of what’s now being called Shaker Woods Village begins Saturday and the owners’ plan for keeping everyone safe has been approved by the health department.

Rob and Lana Wilt are preparing for the 39th opening of Shaker Woods in Columbiana.

“We are doing everything that we possibly can to keep everyone safe,” said.

There are signs throughout the grounds to remind people of social distancing at food stands. There are hand sanitizer stations on trees and spots designated only entrances or only exits.

The maximum capacity will now be 3,200 — a number the Columbiana County Health Department approved. That might seem like a lot but on a normal day at Shaker Woods, there can be up to 10,000 people.

“I think the plan that they have is adequate. I think it should work well,” said Laura Fauss, with the Columbiana County Health District.

She understands 3,200 sounds like a lot of people.

“When you see that number, it’s shocking at first but when you consider the area that those people are going to be in, it is under the guidelines that FEMA requires,” Fauss said.

The Shaker Woods owners will also have a 20-person safety team in place to remind people of the rules. The sheriff’s office will be there, too.

“We are going to be reminders, we are not going to be enforcers. That’s what the sheriff does,” said.

It was the first time Fauss ever heard of a safety team, but she liked the idea.

“I thought that was good of them to take the initiative to hire these employees for that specific purpose,” she said.

There’s one other sign people need to be aware of. It tells them to enjoy their time, but remember there are people waiting to get in.

“If we see too many people getting close — make sure you spread out, make sure you have a mask on. And masks are required, I can’t stress that enough,” said.

There will be no live music but music will be playing through speakers.

The Wilts hope they can at least break even this year.

They meet with the health department early next week to see if any changes need to be made.

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