Indianapolis 500 Postponed Until August

On Thursday, the Indianapolis 500 was postponed until August because of the coronavirus pandemic.  For the first time since 1945 the race will not be held on Memorial Day; instead it will be held Aug. 23, three months later than its May 24 scheduled date.

“The month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is my favorite time of year, and like our fans, I am disappointed that we have had to reschedule the Indianapolis 500,” said motorsports giant Roger Penske, who finalized his purchase of IndyCar and Indianapolis Motor Speedway earlier this year.

“However, the health and safety of our event participants and spectators is our top priority, and we believe that postponing the event is the responsible decision with the conditions and restrictions we are facing,” he said. “We will continue to focus on ways we can enhance the customer experience in the months ahead, and I’m confident we will welcome fans with a transformed facility and a global spectacle when we run the world’s greatest race.”

The Indianapolis 500 began in 1911 but did not run in 1917, 1918 and from 1941-45 because of World Wars I and II. 

COVID-19 forces postponement of Indianapolis 500 until August


Editorial credit: HodagMedia /

Gov. COVID-19 update: Plan to boost funding for certain health care workers; more PPE on the way; and one new death reported

Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced a $116 million initiative at his COVID-19 press briefing this afternoon targeting the possible looming crisis for rural hospitals and other health care providers. The majority of the funds, around $90 million, will come from the federal government.

Some key points of the plan include:

  • Additional payments of $1,000 per month to support for non-physician direct care workers, mainly nurses, and additional payments of $2,000 a month for the same type of health care worker employed by facilities treating a number of COVID-19 patients.
  • Financial support via capital improvement payments to certain hospitals, rural health clinics, behavioral health agencies, and independent physicians for environmental modifications such as drive-thru testing and isolation areas.
  • Financial support for workforce safety training for health care providers caring for patients where it is necessary to have face-to-face services.
  • And an expansion of support and training for telemedicine services.

The governor said the initiative will go a “long way” to help stabilize the entire health care system of Arkansas.

Officials also announced “large purchases” of personal protective equipment (PPE) through state resources which include orders of:

  • Three million N95 masks.
  • Four million surgical masks.
  • Four million disposable gowns.
  • Just over 2 million face shields.
  • And seven million gloves.

The orders are expected to start coming in by the weekend. The Arkansas Department of Health and the state’s Department of Emergency Management will determine the allocation of the PPE.

Hutchinson also stressed for citizens “do the right thing” and continue to follow the recommended steps to protect yourself and others.

Here are other bullet points from today’s briefing:

  • As of this afternoon, the number of positive cases in Arkansas is up from yesterday’s figure of 280 to 335 — a jump of 55 cases. Yesterday’s jump in positive cases was 62.
  • The number of negative test results has increased to 1,504.
  • The governor estimated that at the peak of the virus in the state, 1,000 could possibly be hospitalized across Arkansas.
  • There has been one more death, in central Arkansas, which now brings the statewide total to three. (The chart below from the Arkansas Department of Health has not yet been updated to reflect the death.)
  • There have been 13 recoveries in the state.
  • And out of a total 1,839 tests across the state, the number of negative test results is up to 1,504

Covid stats 03262020

Screenshot from the Arkansas Department of Health’s COVID-19 statewide stats as of this afternoon. There has been one more confirmed death since this was posted.


The new White River Now mobile app has started featuring regular COVID-19 updates and podcasts. In addition to the updates featured on the White River Now family of radio stations, the COVID-19 podcast section also features new interviews with Sen. James Sturch, Batesville Mayor Rick Elumbaugh, Stone County Judge Stacey Avey, and state Rep. Stu Smith. Download the free White River Now app today from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store, and keep up-to-date on all local and state coronavirus information and to listen to the streams of White River Now radio stations.

We also carry live feeds of Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s COVID-19’s briefings on-air, online, and through the White River Now app on Arkansas 103.3 KWOZ and on White River Now’s Facebook page.


Layout 1Get up-to-date local and regional news along with the latest sports and weather every weekday morning by listening to Gary B. on Ozark Newsline, broadcast from the First Community Bank Newsroom on Arkansas 103.3 KWOZWhite River Now updates are also aired weekday mornings on 93 KZLEOutlaw 106.5, and 99.5 Hits Now. Have a news tip or event to promote? Email White River Now at news@whiterivernow.comBe sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Add don’t forget to download the  White River Now mobile app from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store.

Entire New Jersey Nursing Home Presumed To Have COVID-19

Health officials in New Jersey presume all 94 residents at a nursing home have coronavirus, as the United States’ death toll surpassed 800 on Wednesday.

All residents at St. Joseph’s Senior Home in Woodbridge, N.J. have not been tested yet for the virus. Of those who have, 24 have tested positive and the remaining 70 are presumptive positive, according to health officials. Medical workers transported all 94 residents to a nearby CareOne nursing facility or treatment.

Woodbridge is just outside New York City, the epicenter for the United States’ outbreak of COVID-19. There have been 44 deaths in New Jersey and at least 192 in New York City. At least 860 people have died and more than 62,00 have become sick across the country as of Wednesday afternoon.

Entire senior home in New Jersey, 94 people, presumed to have coronavirus


White House And Senate Reach Historic $2 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Deal

Senate leaders and the White House reached an agreement on Wednesday on a massive $2 trillion stimulus package hoping to help businesses and workers negatively affected by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The agreement followed five days of negotiations between the Democrats, the Republicans and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, among others, as the package was unable to advance through the Senate as Democrats twice declined to sign off on it saying it focused too much on helping big corporations and didn’t do enough for workers.

The legislation includes an expansion to unemployment insurance that will see the salaries of every worker who is laid off due to COVID-19 remunerated by the federal government, checks of $1,200 sent directly to middle-class and below Americans, a $367 billion small business loan program, a $500 billion fund for industries and $150 billion earmarked for states and localities whose coffers are stressed by combating the virus. It also includes $130 billion for hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities.

White House, Senate reach deal on $2T coronavirus relief bill


Defensive Lineman Ndamukong Suh Returning To Tampa Bay Buccaneers On $8M, One-Year Deal

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are re-signing defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh to a one-year, $8 million contract with the team.

The 33-year-old Suh, who joined the Bucs on a one-year deal last off-season, was a key part of the team’s top-ranked rushing defense in 2019. He recorded 41 total tackles, 2.5 sacks and four passes defensed in 16 games last season.

Suh, a five-time Pro Bowl selection, spent five seasons with the Lions before playing three years with the Miami Dolphins. He spent the 2018 season with the Los Angeles Rams before joining the Buccaneers prior to last season. In 158 career games between the Lions, Dolphins, Rams and Buccaneers, Suh has totaled 520 combined tackles, 58.5 sacks, 36 passes defensed, one interception and one safety.

Ndamukong Suh reportedly returning to Bucs on one-year deal


Editorial credit: Steve Jacobson /

Minnesota Vikings Sign XFL Linebacker DeMarquis Gates

The Minnesota Vikings have agreed to a contract with All-XFL linebacker DeMarquis Gates. Gates agreed to a one-year, $610,000 non-guaranteed contract.

Gates had 32 total tackles, three tackles for a loss, three passes defensed, two sacks, an interception for the Houston Roughnecks during the 2020 XFL season. The season was canceled March 12 amid the coronavirus pandemic. Gates spent last off-season with the Washington Redskins before being released in June.

Vikings sign XFL linebacker DeMarquis Gates


Editorial credit: dean bertoncelj /

Obituary: Kenneth J. Harper

Kenneth J. Harper, 83 of Cave City died Tuesday, March 24, 2020. He was born January 29, 1937, in Riverside, N. J. to Harry James and Ruth Anne (Hackney) Harper.  He was a retired heavy equipment operator for Waterford Township in Atco, N. J. He was a life member of the Louden Volunteer Fire Department in Atco and the Camden County Fireman’s Association.   He was a member of the Fellowship Baptist Church in West Berlin, N.J.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Harry Harper and Andy Harper and a grandson, Justin King.

Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Rose Harper of the home; two sons, Harry Harper (Anne) of Williamstown, N. J. and Satch Harper (Terri) of Marlton, N. J.; four daughters, Jo Weilder (Ken) of Laurel Springs, Ne. J., Dawn Furlow (Skip) of Evening Shade, Christine Barrett (Jerry) of Berlin, N. J. and Hope King (Charles) of Cave City; ten grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and a host of other relatives and friends.

Graveside services will be Monday, March 30, 2020, at 2:00 p.m. at the Fairview Cemetery located east of Cave City with Bro. Author Barber officiating. Arrangements by Qualls Funeral Home of Cave City.

No visitation is planned.

Pallbearers will be Charles King, Jerry Barrett, Harry Harper and Robert King.