The Lost Summer of 2020 drew to a close Monday with many big Labor Day gatherings cancelled across the U.S. and health authorities pleading with people to keep their distance from others so as not to cause another coronavirus surge like the one that followed Memorial Day.
Downtown Atlanta was quiet as the 85,000 or so people who come dressed as their favourite superheroes or sci-fi characters for the annual Dragon Con convention met online instead.
Huge football stadiums at places like Ohio State and the University of Texas sat empty. Many Labor Day parades marking the unofficial end of summer were called off, and masks were usually required at the few that went on.
"Please, please do not make the same mistakes we all made on Memorial Day weekend. Wear your masks, watch your distance and wash your hands," said Dr. Raul Pino, state health director in Orange County, Florida, which includes the Orlando area.
The U.S. had about 1.6 million confirmed COVID-19 cases around Memorial Day, before backyard parties and other gatherings contributed to a summertime surge.
It now has more than 6.2 million cases, according to the count kept by Johns Hopkins University.