1. French President Emmanuel Macron tested positive for COVID-19 Thursday, following a week when he has met with numerous European leaders. The French and Spanish prime ministers are among those self-isolating because they had recent contact with him. (WMTW)
2. The U.S. tops 16.9 million Covid-19 cases with over 307,000 deaths. The Maine CDC reported 2 new covid related deaths and a record 551 new cases on Wednesday. Maine’s death toll is 267 with 6,394 active cases. 195 Mainers are currently hospitalized w/ covid-19. (AP)
3. School Districts can either cancel school and make it up at the end of the year or hold remote learning instead of a snow day today. Biddeford has opted to keep traditional snow days this year. Lisbon is taking a similar approach, with the superintendent saying students and staff could use a break after working harder than ever. Brunswick has opted for remote learning instead of snow days. (WGME)
4. Portland’s only LGBTQ bar has been shuttered since the start of the pandemic in March. Now, after eight months with closed doors, Blackstones is asking for the public’s help to stay in business. $25,000 will help them make it until April. Their gofundme has raised over $22,000 so far. (WMTW)
5. The NFL is planning to invite vaccinated healthcare workers to the Super Bowl to thank them and pay tribute to their dedicated work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Commissioner Goodell said “We hope that in some small way, this initiative will inspire our country and recognize these true American heroes as we look forward to a better and healthier year.” (TMZ)
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