Coachella Valley coronavirus news and info | Tuesday, May 26

(📸: Sue Farris)

Cactus Hugs has been tracking local stories about the coronavirus.   For a rundown of all of our updates, click here. Stay safe, stay at a good social distance.

Thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs. For ways to keep this website going (and free!), click here.

As of 3 pm Tuesday, Riverside County officials have confirmed:

  • 7,139 people have officially tested positive for COVID-19.
    • 135 people have been reported to have tested positive in the last 24 hours.
  • 303 people are confirmed to have died in the county from the coronavirus.
    • There were 11 reported deaths of people in the last 24 hours.
  • There are currently 193 confirmed cases hospitalized.
    • 63 of those people in the ICU.
  • There have been 4,285 official recovered cases in the county.
  • The county has conducted 106,529 tests.

As of 3 pm Tuesday, San Bernardino County has confirmed 4,567 cases of COVID-19.  There have been 176 deaths in San Bernardino County.

As of 4 pm Thursday, there have been 99,09 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in California.  There have been 3,806 confirmed deaths in the state.


The numbers increase everyday.  They are more than just numbers.  They are people we have lost:


In a new poll, 2 in 10 Americans say they know someone who has been hospitalized or who has died as a result of COVID-19.  Nearly three in 10 (28%) said they know someone who has been infected with the virus.

Antibody tests for COVID-19 might be wrong up to half the time, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in new guidance posted on its website.  The tests, which can help determine if someone has previously been infected with the virus and may have built up some immunity to it, are not accurate enough to use to make important policy decisions, the CDC said.

Governor Gavin Newsom announced on Tuesday that hair salons and barbershops can reopen immediately in the majority of California’s counties, including Riverside County.  While allowed to open, the state is requiring serious modifications to be in place, including:

  • Requiring the use of face coverings for staff and customers
  • Removing high-touch amenities like magazines, coffee makers from lobbies
  • Frequent disinfecting of booths, stations and tools
  • Contacting customers before appointments to ensure they aren’t exhibiting symptoms
  • Staggering appointments to reduce crowding

The move to reopen hair salons and barbershops is the first of California’s Phase 3 Opening, which include higher risk workplaces that require close proximity to other people.  Businesses in Stage 3 still not cleared to open in the state include: nail salons, gyms, movie theaters, and sporting events without live audiences.  Phase Four would then effectively end the stay-at-home order and allow things like concerts and sporting events with crowds.

Most of the Coachella Valley’s retail shopping malls reopened on Tuesday, with the Indio Grand Marketplace, the Desert Hills Premium Outlets, and some of the stores at the Gardens on El Paseo.  The Westfield Mall in Palm Desert is set to reopen on Friday.

Restaurants in the Coachella Valley began to reopen for dine-in service over the weekend.  Here are some that have reopened for dine-in service:

The Palm Springs Power baseball team has postponed their season, which was set to begin this week.  The organization says they are evaluating the situation on a daily basis and are still prepared to play this summer, should it be safe to do so:

Six Flags has announced their guidelines for reopening their theme parks.  Among the measures: Visitors over the age of 2 will be required to wear a mask, everyone is temperature checked at the entrance, foot traffic will be directed one-way on paths, and passengers on each park’s rides will be separated by empty rows and seats.  The measures would be implemented when parks such as Six Flags Magic Mountain are allowed to reopen, with no date yet set.

On the same day Twitter began to label some of his tweets with a fact check, President Donald Trump asked a reporter to take off his mask, when the reporter refused, Trump claimed the reporter just wanted “to be politically correct”:

When asked of Trump’s comments regarding masks, Joe Biden called the President “a fool”:

Early in the pandemic, Ernie Ball transitioned some of their staff from making guitar stings and equipment to instead make masks.  The local company has donated masks to healthcare workers, farm laborers, police & fire departments, food banks, and more.  They are now offering to send free masks to residents of the Coachella Valley.  You can get more info here.

What would a reopened Las Vegas look like? The New York Times takes a look – and without buffets, nightclubs, and live shows, it’s going to be very different than what you are used to.

Finally, this video tours the Coachella Valley with a drone at a time when it’s normally bustling with the musical festivals and lots of spring visitors.  It shows a much quieter Coachella Valley this year:

That’s all for this evening. Stay safe. Stay smart. Stay home.   

Thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs.

These are stressful times for all of us. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and our desert community stronger. This link has some resources to help with coping and also numbers to call or text if you, or someone you know, feels overwhelmed.

Please, take care of yourself and each other. You are important. You are valued. You are loved. 💚🌵

Anything we missed? Let us know about it.