Lincoln added 51 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, bringing the community total to 1,998.

The number of deaths remains at 13.

Total recoveries remain at 714, according to the daily report from Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department.

The overall positivity rate for testing in Lancaster County was slightly up from 6.5% to 6.6%. The state positivity rate slipped from 10.4% to 10.3%, and the national rate dropped from 9.7% to 9.3%.

Sixteen COVID-19 patients are hospitalized in Lincoln, including nine Lancaster County residents. One patient is on a ventilator.

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Latest updates on coronavirus in Lincoln and nearby

See the latest news as more coronavirus cases are identified in Nebraska.

Tournament attendance will be limited to immediate family members of coaches and players.

Lancaster County crosses threshold of 1,000 COVID-19 cases

More than 1,000 residents have now been diagnosed with COVID-19 in Lincoln and Lancaster County, health officials announced Friday.

After 30 days at the medical center and three weeks of isolation at her father’s home in west Omaha, Emma Hutchinson was allowed to resume eating solid food and say goodbye to “Fred,” her nickname for the feeding tube.

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Lincoln residents, many donning masks and keeping their distance from others, visited local cemeteries to pay their respects.

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Jenny Michener was feted by a drive-thru party celebrating her graduation from Lincoln Southeast on a day devoted to grads.

The Nebraska National Guard has been actively engaged on the front lines of the state’s battle against the coronavirus.

Church leaders in Nebraska are used to making tough decisions for their congregations. But now, in the midst of a pandemic, churches must weig…

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More than 3,000 high school seniors in Lincoln are graduating into a world nobody’s navigated before, staring into a pandemic that has closed schools, slashed families’ economic security and, for many graduates, changed their college plans.

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NU athletic director Bill Moos knows he and his staff will be judged on how they handle their business during the pandemic. So far, so good.

David Graff works remotely these days, as do the hundreds who call Hudl’s high-tech headquarters in the Haymarket their workplace.

Intensive care hospital beds at less than 20% available. 

Husker AD says variety of scenarios being considered, including a shortened football season
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At this point, Bill Moos says, he can’t say for certain that Nebraska will play all — or even any — of its non-conference games.

Retirement didn’t last long for former Lincoln Fire and Rescue Chief Mike Despain.

Five of Lincoln's public pools to open June 15
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Five Lincoln public pools — Arnold Heights, Ballard, Belmont, Irvingdale and Woods — will open to the public in a limited capacity on June 15.

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Moos said Nebraska’s plan for bringing student-athletes back to campus is detailed and thorough enough that the Big Ten requested that it be shared with other schools in the conference. 

Two dozen of the area’s most popular parks, like Branched Oak, Pawnee and Platte, remain closed to tent camping.

Legion baseball is coming. Here's what a season might look like

There might be more hand sanitizer and disinfectants in the ballpark than spectators, but there will be baseball in the Capital City. 

UNL freezes pay for employees, announces some reopening guidelines

Lost revenue and potential future impacts on state funding led UNL to freeze salaries for the year, Chancellor Ronnie Green said.

List of restaurants, retail and service businesses that have reopened in Lincoln
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We’re putting together a list of businesses that are reopening in the Lincoln area. Let us know your plans by emailing calendars@journalstar.com.

Almost two-thirds of Nebraska’s 49 senators are in a high-risk category for COVID-19 complications because of age or underlying health conditions.

Three more Omaha corrections inmates test positive for virus

Three more inmates at the Community Corrections Center-Omaha have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total to seven inmates who have t…

Husker volleyball season ticket renewals delayed until home schedule picture clears

Nebraska is delaying volleyball season ticket renewals due to pandemic-related uncertainty, the school confirmed to the Journal Star on Wednesday. 

Noting the end of the school year in a pandemic
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At middle and high schools across the city, teachers made signs and hung decorations and put on costumes and played music to help students note the end of a school year where dining room tables and bedroom desks became the classroom.

Seward cancels Fourth of July festival
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This year would have marked the 153rd annual community Fourth of July celebration in Seward, which first put on an event in the local town square in 1868.

Non-COVID patient numbers on the rise at Bryan
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The increase in patients is a sign of the pent-up demand for elective procedures that were temporarily prohibited, hospital officials say.

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Monday’s flyover was part of a pre-planned training flight and included more than 30 Nebraska hospitals, ending with those in Lincoln. 

48-year-old woman with COVID-19 accused of spitting on walls at Lincoln hospital, assaulting nurse

Prosecutors charged Nyadak Tut, of Lincoln, with assault on a health care professional, a felony.

Lincoln bowling leaders propose reopening alleys under half-capacity regulations

As other establishments slowly begin to open their doors, John Losito and Jason Korn think it could be time to do the same.

Omaha company creating prototype of mask created at UNMC to protect health care providers
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Laboratory testing showed the new mask caught more than 90% of airborne particles expelled into the mask.

Watch: Ben Sasse lashes out at China, mixes in humor, in Fremont graduation speech

Sen. Ben Sasse spoke during Fremont High School’s virtual graduation Saturday and spent a majority of his speech ripping China for causing the pandemic and making jokes about psychologists and people named Jeremy.

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The first wedding party to celebrate at the Lincoln Commercial Club Ballroom had plenty of room to keep their distance — and to set up a game of cornhole.

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Here’s the unlikely story of how a punk rock star wrote a song about the editor of the Journal Star.

Lincoln woman had fever, shakes, headache, trouble breathing and a negative COVID-19 test

A Lincoln woman exhibited many of the symptoms associated with COVID-19 but tested negative — doctors say she’s not the only one.

AGs in 14 states to Trump: Let's hold China accountable

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson are taking the lead on the coalition. The letter is also signed by attorneys general in Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Tennessee and West Virginia.

Majority of COVID-19 cases found disproportionately in Lancaster County's Asian, Hispanic communities

Romeo Guerra sensed this national trend would prove out in the Lincoln area before the data arrived, he said. 

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Journal Star photographers have captured life in the city for the past months with some activities going on as usual but many sights out of the norm.

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From Christmas lights in Minden to a COVID-19 test relay by the State Patrol, many people have stepped up to spread cheer and kindness in Linc…

City Hall: Police bust wild parties, but no tickets written for violating Lincoln's directed health measure

Lincoln police didn’t write any tickets for a violation of Lancaster County’s directed health measure, according to city officials.

Lincoln needs to outlaw price-gouging during emergencies such as this pandemic, City Councilman James Michael Bowers said Monday. 

For Marci Davison of Carmela’s, and other Lincoln business owners, reopening after a trying six weeks marked a milestone of sorts.

Nebraska records 100th coronavirus-linked death

The number of COVID-19 deaths in Nebraska reached the century mark on Monday, with deaths reported in hard-hit Douglas, Hall and Dawson counties.

New gauge pegged at 'high risk' for coronavirus spread in Lincoln

Lincoln city officials reported 40 more COVID-19 cases Monday, bringing the county total to 647.

Senators call on governor to end Test Nebraska contracts

Gov. Pete Ricketts called the suggestion “ludicrous.”

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This columnist isn’t ready to dine out yet, and some local venues aren’t ready to have customers in the door yet, either. Find out who’s in and who is waiting for COVID-19 cases to dwindle.

Medical professionals acknowledge the pressure from both sides about reopening, and the effects of economic turmoil. But health effects of the disease and deaths are equally important, they say.

Catholic churches will not be holding Mass on Sunday and most of the city’s Protestant churches will not be reopening, even though they are allowed to do so under statewide rules.

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While facing technological, social and financial challenges, the percentage of students who did at least some coursework ranged from 44% at North Star to 90% at Southwest, and most schools had less than 60% of students engaging, according to rough estimates.

Face masks, employee temperature checks required for Lincoln businesses

The city begins its new directed health measure on Monday. It runs through June 30.

The county’s report comes on the heels of a round of testing for all workers at Tyson’s Dakota City plant. The county’s total is now the highest in the state.

On Thursday, during both National Nurses Week and National Hospitals Week, the selfie walls were installed at both Bryan East and Bryan West Campus hospitals.

Lincoln, Lancaster County to reluctantly adopt eased restrictions Ricketts outlined

Lincoln and Lancaster County will implement eased restrictions beginning Monday, after Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and her health director relu…

Health district to stop reporting meatpacking cases

At least one Nebraska health department says it will no longer report COVID-19 case numbers linked to specific meatpacking plants after Gov. Pete Ricketts raised health privacy concerns.

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A Lincoln family recreates a “Wishtree” in their front yard as a way to share hopes during the pandemic.

Some campsites to reopen, but Nebraska beaches closed because of large gatherings

Officers broke up recent beach parties with more than 100 people.

Ricketts confident his coronavirus policy is working

Gov. Ricketts said he has tried to balance restrictions with a regional loosening of mandates that preserves citizen willingness and responsibility, an approach sometimes described as “the hammer and the dance.” 

23 new cases confirmed in Lancaster County; national analysis identifies Lincoln as rising hotspot

The rate of new COVID-19 cases in Lincoln and Lancaster County has led a national coronavirus case tracking system to label the area as a pote…

Months of planning and entire careers in public health have prepared the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department for what one employee called “the most defining moment of most of our lives.”

City Hall: How does health department decide what info to release on new cases?

As the coronavirus pandemic stretches on, questions continue to trickle into the Journal Star newsroom asking if the Lincoln-Lancaster County …

B&R is seeing higher costs for many pork and beef products and supply is limited, the stores’ marketing director said.

NU women's basketball player Kate Cain says her family has recovered after battle with coronavirus

Cain revealed on a video posted to Huskers.com that some of her immediate family members have recovered after bouts with coronavirus.

Immigrant who worked at Tyson's Dakota City plant for 37 years succumbs to COVID-19

Viengxay Khuninh, a worker at a Tyson plant in Dakota City, developed a cough, then a fever, last month. Less than a week later, he was dead.

Air National Guard member spends several weeks working in New York City hospital, goes home with COVID-19.

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“The stories that came from those families, you could hear the common themes — I’m frightened, my hours were reduced, I’ve never been in this situation before,” said Foundation for LPS President Wendy Van DeLaCastro.

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So why did one customer come to Gateway Friday? “Sick of sitting at home. Wanted to get a new pair of kicks. My wife’s at work. I’ve got nothing to do.”

Majority of coronavirus deaths in Nebraska have come from long-term care patients

At least 48 of those who have died in Nebraska thus far because of the coronavirus were residents of long-term care facilities.

669 Tyson workers at Dakota City plant test positive for COVID-19, source says

The 669 workers with the virus represent over 15% of the Dakota City plant’s workforce. 

Arnold Zimmerman’s family had his obituary written. 

Lincoln losing all Delta service at least through September

The Lincoln Airport, which already has seen its passenger numbers crater because of COVID-19, is about to take another hit.

Coronavirus hospitalization eases in Omaha, stable in Lincoln

Hospitals in Nebraska have “all agreed to cooperate,” the state’s chief medical officer said, and that means Omaha hospitals can “use Lincoln capacity if necessary” to meet their needs.

Bryan takes flak for promoting use of masks

Bob Ravenscroft said Bryan Health has experienced some “pretty pointed” criticism that its stance on masks is politically motivated. 

Dining out literally expanded as mayor gives Lincoln restaurants more flexibility

More Lincoln restaurants can go al fresco to bump up their serving capacities while keeping diners socially distanced. 

Local health officials say Lincoln won't host 2020 National High School Finals Rodeo

On a calendar void of the Red-White Spring Game, the Lincoln Marathon and the blue jackets of the annual state FFA convention, the loss of the…

Bryan hits high for COVID-19 patients from Lancaster County

Bryan Health officials said they believe COVID-19 cases are stabilizing even as they reported what appears to be the highest number so far of …

“I wouldn’t be running this test in this laboratory if I didn’t believe in it,” said CHI Health St. Elizabeth lab director Becky Croner. “… If there is any reason I don’t believe the results are correct, we pull it and run it again.”

Nebraska economy fares better than most states amid pandemic

Officials say Nebraska’s economy may have also fared better overall during the downturn because the state’s social-distancing measures weren’t as strict as most states imposed.

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Six weeks ago, a Boy Scout from Firth launched a 3-D printing project to help the sore ears of frontline workers during the pandemic; he’s shipping free EarSavers all over the country now.

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Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska, The Salvation Army and other local charities are working to support Nebraskans struggling to pay their rent, mortgage and utilities during the coronavirus pandemic.

Bryan, CHI Health relax visitor restrictions

Starting Monday, adult patients will be allowed one healthy adult visitor.

Cindy Lange-Kubick: The Accordion Man of Apple Street, polka music during the pandemic and beyond
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On a quiet street in Lincoln, a musician plays the accordion during the pandemic, delighting neighbors and passersby.

Lincoln's Uncle Sam Jam canceled over pandemic gathering concerns
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No official city fireworks this year, Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird said. What do you think of the decision?

For nine weeks, Lincoln Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and interim Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Director Pat Lopez made daily on-camera appeara…

WATCH NOW: Available state data shows Nebraskans of color hit hard by COVID-19

Though state-level data about the effects of COVID-19 on Nebraskans remain incomplete, the numbers indicate minorities were diagnosed with the…

Watch Now: Potential COVID-19 spike a concern as protests continue, Lincoln mayor says

“We are encouraging anyone who goes to a rally to please wear a face mask (and) try to keep some distance between yourself and others so that everyone can stay safe tonight and in the coming weeks,” Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird said Tuesday.

Bryan reminds people of COVID-19 symptoms to watch for

Loosening of restrictions, protests could lead to more infections, and Bryan Health officials said people need to be aware of the potential signs.

COVID-19 cases increasing on Omaha, Winnebago reservations

Together, the Winnebago and Omaha cases add up to 95 of Thurston County’s 110 total cases. The county’s one death attributed to COVID-19 was a Winnebago resident.

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A Lincoln woman started a Facebook photo page to share pictures of what she was making during the pandemic. She thought she’d be lucky to get 80 members.

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The survey will ask parents which options would work best for their families if the COVID-19 situation is severe enough that schools can’t operate normally

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Amid uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, applications to the NY system from Nebraska students are up 6.4% from a year ago.

“We’ve waited 80 days,” said Pete Watters, owner of Lincoln’s Zoo Bar. “We can wait a couple more.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has shut down numerous Lincoln businesses and put thousands of local residents out of work.

Nebraska City meatpacking plant bucks outbreak trend

There have been few if any cases of COVID-19 confirmed in workers at the Cargill plant in Nebraska City.

First case of coronavirus-related inflammatory disease in children reported in Nebraska

A 9-year-old Lexington boy is believed to be the first known Nebraska case of a coronavirus-related complication that affects children.

Lancaster County reports 10th death from COVID-19, drops risk dial to moderate

The COVID-19 death toll in Lancaster County reached double digits Friday, the same day the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department upgraded…

27 new COVID-19 cases reported in Lancaster County on Sunday
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Lancaster County added 27 coronavirus cases Sunday, but reported no new deaths, according to the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department.

2nd case of coronavirus complication reported in Omaha boy

Nebraska now has a second case of a coronavirus-related complication that affects children.

Bryan sees lowest number of COVID-19 patients since April, city reports 16 new cases

As new coronavirus cases have begun to slow in Lincoln, Bryan Health reported its lowest number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in two months.

Lincoln’s first person identified to have a case of community spread COVID-19 had his family tested for antibodies. Both the results and what they mean are mixed.

Two members of National Guard who assisted Lincoln police during protests test positive for coronavirus

Officials said they plan to test all National Guard personnel who have been on duty assisting police in Lincoln and Omaha.

Virus hits 11 workers, 1 patient at Lincoln Regional Center

Eleven employees and one patient have tested positive for the coronavirus at the state-run psychiatric hospital in Lincoln.

They call it “window wellness,” a visit to residents of assisted-living facilities who can’t have visitors in the buildings because of COVID-19 precautions. 

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From a heart transplant to a cross-country move, the Santana family has seen plenty of tough times over the years.

Nebraska prisons to offer coronavirus testing to all inmates; 19th staffer tests positive

Inmates in Nebraska’s 10 prisons may voluntarily seek coronavirus testing even if they show no symptoms, Nebraska Department of Correctional S…

Potential COVID-19 Nebraska ag losses pegged at $3.7 billion

Nebraska could suffer nearly $3.7 billion in agricultural income losses this year due to the coronavirus if economic conditions do not improve…

County treasurer Rachel Garver announced Wednesday that offices will begin reopening on Monday, though some services will be altered in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Bryan, St. Elizabeth continue to see decline in COVID-19 patients; 32 new cases in Lancaster County

Bryan Health said it now has only nine patients with confirmed cases of the virus. That’s down from 13 on Monday and 30 on June 1.

The owner of LP Fitness in northeast Lincoln had to get creative to maintain her community-oriented workouts during a time when people have been encouraged to stay apart.

Arnold, Ballard, Belmont, Irvingdale and Woods will have three daily 90-minute swim sessions to allow staff to disinfect surfaces during breaks.

COVID-19 deaths in Nebraska climb to 216 as Douglas County numbers surge

Deaths in Nebraska linked to the coronavirus spiked this week, climbing by 21 — to 216 — over recent days.

With reopening comes heightened safety concerns for Nebraska businesses

The Heartland Workers Center has seen somewhat disastrous results from employees not knowing what’s going on in their workplaces. 

Lancaster County ends week with fewest new COVID-19 cases since April

The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department reported 110 cases in the last seven days, a decline from 145 a week ago and down from 299 when cases peaked locally on May 9.

Gov. Pete Ricketts on Monday announced the further loosening of restrictions implemented to control the spread of the coronavirus in Nebraska,…

City of Lincoln adds 15 coronavirus cases, reports significant increase in documented recoveries
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City officials announced 15 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Lancaster County on Monday, bringing the total to 1,487.

COVID-19 risk dial improved in Lincoln as cases continue to drop

The risk dial remains in the moderate category, but the dial inched closer to the low risk area.

A few thousand visitors have strolled around the zoo each day since it reopened on June 1.

“Customers may be encouraged to wear face coverings, but may not be refused service for failure to do so,” according to Taylor Gage, the governor’s spokesman.

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The budget also asks for 2% more in state appropriations over the next two years, what NU called a “modest increase” reflective of its efforts to be a good partner to state lawmakers during the crisis.

Parents speak out against masks in schools; LPS still figuring out pandemic costs
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Parents who oppose having students and staff wear masks when school resumes in the fall asked the Lincoln Board of Education to reconsider the…

Nebraska woman angry about COVID risk after encounter with Kansas couple

A Nebraska woman claims a county official from Kansas and his wife may have exposed her to COVID-19 at a hotel pool in Valentine.

If you are hoping antibody testing for COVID-19 might help in getting things back to normal until there’s a vaccine, you’re likely to be disap…

State Sen. Mike Moser was working outside in his yard the night before Mother’s Day when it became apparent something was wrong.

More young people testing positive for COVID-19, local health officials say
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So far this month, 65% of the positive cases have been in people under 40, interim Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department Director Pat Lopez said Friday.

Frost says five Husker football players tested positive for COVID-19 since early April
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Nebraska has tested roughly 250 student-athletes and staff, and there have been eight positive tests, including five football players.

Nebraska State Fair to go on without many of the bells and whistles

Plans are to host 4-H exhibits and contests on the first weekend of the fair, and FFA activities on the second weekend. The fair might “go dark” during the week, director Bill Ogg said.

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The decision by Lincoln Public Schools to bring staff and students back to school in the fall, Brent Toalson worried, would pose too great a chance that he could expose his family to the virus.

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Professor Heather Hallen-Adams has used her artistic talent and interest in nature — and whimsy — to create almost daily chalk drawings to brighten the days of her neighbors and passersby.

Seventh- and eighth-graders will get an extra day of summer in Lincoln Public Schools
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The first day for LPS students is Aug. 12, with students in grades 7, 8, 10, 11 and 12 following a day later. The first day of preschool will be Aug. 17.

As bad as the losses from major event cancellations are, economists say the economic damage they cause is likely to pale compared to the effects of the widespread closings of restaurants, retail stores and other businesses.

All ages now can get screened for coronavirus; protests spur change

Pat Lopez, interim director of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department, stressed the importance of tests for those who gathered among large crowds. 

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The University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus will look a lot different for the fall 2020 semester.

Virus hits 11 workers, 1 patient at Lincoln Regional Center

Eleven employees and one patient have tested positive for the coronavirus at the state-run psychiatric hospital in Lincoln.

Garth Brooks' drive-in concert at Lancaster Event Center is sellout
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The Event Center pre-party will feature Omaha country band Silas Creek with food trucks on the grounds and beverage sales.

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Less than a day after announcing plans to hold drive-thru graduations at high schools, Lincoln Public Schools made arrangements for modified in-person ceremonies to be held at the arena.

Limos, masks and isolation: With Martinez helping lead way, Huskers push forward aggressively but safely
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Scott Frost said NU has been aggressive from the start in its approach to working through the pandemic, with an obvious eye on safety.

Nebraska shops scramble to keep up with booming bike demand

In 30 years of operating the Omaha and Lincoln Bike Rack shops, Jim Carveth said this is the busiest he has ever been. 

Bryan offers dying COVID-19 patients compassionate visits

Bryan Health will offer a one-time opportunity for two visitors to see COVID-19 patients who are near death, hospital system officials announc…

NSAA fall sports remain fluid situation with COVID-19 pandemic still spreading

The NSAA will return to its normal summer protocol heading into a fall high school sports season. At least for now. 

LPS planning for 'full school' beginning Aug. 12, but will adjust based on virus spread

Much of what the coming school year will look like — masks for students or remote learning — depends on the “risk dial” maintained by the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department.

Administrations in Iowa and Nebraska have so far disregarded much of the criticism of the partnerships. What do you think of Test Nebraska?

More than 90 Lincoln firms got at least $1 million from PPP

Among the 91 companies that got seven-figure loans were 30 that received at least $2 million and two — Spreetail and Sampson Construction — that received at least $5 million.

Nebraskans getting unemployment must get back to the job search

Need to continue to draw unemployment checks? If you aren’t already looking for jobs, beginning next week, you will be required to rejoin that…

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Want a glimpse of what school will look like this fall? Take a peek inside Cedars Community Learning Center, where students have a new accessory to complement the traditional shorts and T-shirts of summer: masks.

Bryan says it expects hospitalizations to begin rising again

Bryan’s past experience has shown that hospitalizations tend to increase a few weeks to a month after there is a spike in positive test results.

The money will help residents put food on the table, make rent or mortgage payments, and pay utilities, Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird said.

Nebraska surpasses 20,000 cases of COVID-19

Cases in Douglas, Lancaster and Sarpy County are growing fastest in the state.  

Reach the writer at 402-473-7248 or dwalton@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSdon