Covid vaccinations are now available at Sussex County Fairgrounds

Augusta. Don’t just show up: be sure to have an appointment.

| 19 Jan 2021 | 12:59

In a showing of community collaboration in a time of need, the Sussex County Fairgrounds has partnered with the Sussex County government to establish a Covid-19 vaccination site on its property.

The site opened on Jan. 14. Yes, they are open, but don’t just show up unless you have an appointment. Registration information is available at and is updated frequently.

“Our role is to help support the operation being conducted by the County of Sussex,” said Fairgrounds manager, Mike Richards. “We work closely with them to ensure that they have what they need here at the Fairgrounds so that the staff and numerous volunteers are safe and supported, capable of performing the long schedule of vaccinations ahead in the next several months.”

The Fairgrounds has been working with the Sheriff’s Office Emergency Management since the pandemic hit last spring and has worked with the Division of Health to offer drive-through flu vaccines in the Richards Building this past fall.

“I think it’s a great partnership we have right now with the Fairgrounds,” said Sheriff Mike Strada. “We certainly appreciate that they are offering this for the citizens of county. We started looking at centrally located places in the county where the Department of Health could give out vaccinations and the Fairgrounds was a great option.”

Sheriff Strada said the Sheriff’s Department’s role with the vaccine distribution is to provide security at and around the Fairgrounds.

“Given the central location of the Fairgrounds in Sussex County, our past successful partnership, the County of Sussex inquired if the Fairgrounds could be a Covid vaccination site and we gladly accepted the opportunity to help improve public health in our County and to help the businesses rebound as soon as possible,” Richards said. “The Fairgrounds is owned by the private non-profit Sussex County Farm & Horse Show Association/NJ State Fair and has been severely impacted by the pandemic, so we look forward to doing everything we can to serve as a community partner with the County of Sussex to help restore normalcy and safe social gatherings as soon as possible.”

One week in

Vaccinations have been administered for more than a week now and will continue. Richards said all scheduling and appointment questions should be referred to the Sussex County Division of Health.

Law enforcement is protecting the precious, life-saving vaccine.

“The Sheriff’s Office has been providing security at the site, and no vaccines are stored at the Fairgrounds,” Richards said. “The Fairgrounds is also regularly patrolled by the New Jersey State Police.”

The Sussex County website states: “Sussex County has been advised that the Moderna vaccine will be delivered. Future shipments could be provided by other manufacturers. You will receive a card at the time of your first vaccination with pertinent information and a schedule for the second round of vaccine to be administered.”

A statement issued by the Fairgrounds says: “While we would prefer to be hosting events at the Fairgrounds that promote agriculture, family-friendly entertainment, education, and youth development, or helping other local non-profits with their fundraising efforts, the members of Sussex County Farm & Horse Show Association have stepped forward to help improve public health and to help area businesses rebound as soon as possible.”

Related story:

Please see related story, “Tristate area feels like the Wild West trying to get a Covid vaccine,” on pages 8-9.

Sussex County works to lower the curve
“As health efforts are employed around the globe in hopes to slow down the spread of the virus, we continue to see numbers rise,” says the Sussex County Department of Health. “To truly stop the spread of the virus efforts must be taken by all members of our community.”
The health department offers the following guidance: “o protect yourself, your loved ones, and your community”:
Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care. Learn what to do if you are sick.
Always wear a mask over your nose and mouth in public spaces, and anywhere that you cannot keep six feet of distance from another person. Face coverings are required in indoor public spaces and in outdoor public spaces when social distancing is difficult to maintain.
Keep six feet between yourself and others whenever possible and avoid crowded areas.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Get tested: testing is now available to everyone in New Jersey. You could have Covid-19 and not even know it. Protect yourself and save the lives of your loved ones by getting tested – especially if you have symptoms, have been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, are an essential worker, were recently in a large crowd where social distancing was hard to maintain, or recently traveled outside the immediate region. Find a testing location near you at
Home testing through LabCorp is available to residents 18 and over. Recently the county executed a contract with Vault for home testing which will be open to all residents. Zufall Federally Qualified Health Clinic will be opening a weekly testing site in Sparta, Frankford and Newton shortly. Testing is at no cost. Visit the county website at to access a test.
Answer the phone when a contact tracer calls. You have been called because you either tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has – so it’s critical you answer the phone. Contact tracers are calling with life-saving information that will keep you, your loved ones, and your community safe and healthy. All information remains confidential. Learn how contact tracing saves lives at Sussex County has increased its contact investigation and tracing efforts throughout the county.
Get vaccinated. The county is opening a vaccination clinic in Frankford on Jan. 14. The State of New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) is issuing vaccines by phases. The county updates its vaccination frequently asked questions daily. Visit and click Vaccine Q & A for more information on scheduling a vaccine and the NJDOH vaccination phases.
For more information, residents may call the Sussex County Covid-19 Hotline at 973-579-9488 to speak with a Division of Health staff member or Sussex County Medical Reserve Corps volunteer. The Hotline’s hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.” – Coretta Scott King