As your community newspaper, the Osprey Observer will stay open for regular business hours and will continue publishing our newspapers during the next eight weeks.

We are monitoring every press release and every advisory from Hillsborough County, the state of Florida and the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and it is our top priority to keep our readers, our advertisers and our families safe and healthy during the next two months.

With that in mind, we are here to help local businesses craft their brand messaging, their social media and how to reflect their best practices to give the community confidence in their services.

Please call us at 657-2418 if you need guidance on any services, openings or assistance needed and our team will do everything we can to help. We are also collecting a list of organizations that need our help in this time, including Seeds of Hope, ECHO of Brandon (Emergency Care Help Organization), Meals On Wheels of Tampa and so many more.

Please let us know of any community resources that could be of assistance to our readers, and thank you for reading!

While reading the upcoming editions, please know that some events may have announced a delay, a postponement or a rescheduled event after the paper has gone to press, so please contact the organization directly for the latest information.

For Hillsborough County schools, new Superintendent Addison Davis released the following, “The health and safety of our students and staff is our top priority. Because of this, we are taking steps to make sure everyone is following the requirements of the Florida Department of Health.” For the latest update, visit HillsboroughSchools.org/coronavirus.

Starting on March 17, the county administrator Mike Merrill made a special order for all restaurants, bars, clubs and other businesses serving food and drink that they must close by 10 p.m. and limit load capacity to 50 percent.

Shortly thereafter, the county released a second order limiting all public and private gatherings, including churches, to 50 people.

Experts say social distancing is the most effective way to slow the spread of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) and to ensure public health facilities are not overwhelmed. The practice means refraining from large gatherings and keeping a 6-foot distance from other people when possible.

Hillsborough County’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information for Business: https://www.hillsboroughcounty.org/en/residents/public-safety/emergency-management/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-business.

Current numbers for the state of Florida of COVID-19 cases: http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseasesand-conditions/COVID-19/index.html.

As of this printing, all local schools, libraries and many public facilities will be closed until further notice or at least until Monday, March 30.