FORT HUACHUCA — While travel restrictions remain in place at Fort Huachuca because of skyrocketing cases of coronavirus, the new garrison commander announced Tuesday that a few more amenities will be reopening.

At his first Facebook Live COVID-19 Town Hall on Fort Huachuca, Col. Jarrod Moreland’s words likely were welcome by service members and their families because of the venues that Moreland said would soon reopen.

At the start of the 15th Town Hall session Tuesday night, Maj. Gen. Laura Potter said the 60-mile travel restriction is still in place for active military, but Potter also said she trusted that the garrison could handle the reopening of a handful of locations that would have normally remained closed under the current conditions of increasing COVID-19 cases.

Moreland, who took command of the garrison last week from the retiring Col. Chad Rambo, announced that the installation’s movie theater would be opening Friday evening. Moreland said movies would be free for now and seating would be at 35 percent capacity. The concession stand will be open, but with limited offerings.

Another planned reopening is the Irwin Pool, which Moreland said should happen on Fourth of July weekend. The Sportsman Center is opening on July 11, while the Yardley Community Center will open Friday night. Moreland said the entertainment area at Yardley will be open only to Assignment Incentive Pay soldiers. The pizza parlor and the travel and ticket booth will be accessible to all soldiers, he said.

While these venues are opening, Potter and Lt. Col. Wendy Gray, commander of the Raymond W. Bliss Army Health Center, said they continue to be concerned about the rapid rise in virus cases in Cochise County and the state.

“This is a very troubling, alarming pandemic,” Potter said.

For the past 15 weeks, the commanding general has been hammering home the issue about face masks and that they should be worn in public, especially when social distancing is a challenge.

Gray addressed that.

“One issue we’ve seen across this community is a lack of face masks,” Gray said. “Many leaders are concerned that complacency in maintaining mask usage, along with social distancing measures, could lead to decreased compliance and increased transmission across the installation.”

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