17 cases of COVID-19 linked to two weddings in York Region


York Region is reporting a new one-day high of 180 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, and we're starting to learn why.

Two weddings in the region are responsible for 17 cases of the virus.

The events were held at the end of last month, and the cases are just starting to show up now.

One was held on Wednesday, October 28th, with a pre-wedding event, featuring 14 people in the City of Markham. That's where health officials say there was insufficient physical distancing and masking, and a high risk of exposure.

The ceremony was at Chateau Le Jardin in Vaughan, and despite the fact that 130-140 people were in attendance, the risk of exposure was low. The after-party was back at a private home  in Markham, and featured 10 people, but the exposure was high.

The other wedding was on Friday, October 30th, with a pre-wedding gathering at a home in Ajax. One that featured insufficient physical distancing and masking, with a high risk of exposure.

The ceremony was held at Paradise Banque Hall in Vaughan, with 130 people in attendance, but the risk of exposure was low.  There was no after-party for the second wedding.

But, out of these two events, 12 cases have been confirmed in York Region residents and 5 in people from Toronto. A total of nine people attended both ceremonies.

What's disturbing to health officials, is that the two weddings were held while York Region was under a "modified stage two," meaning gatherings were limited to 10 people inside and 25 people outside.

It's the third large cluster of cases that have been linked to weddings in York Region.

"Unlike our other wedding clusters, in this instance, adequate infection prevention and control measures at the banquet and event facilities has shown reduced risk of COVID-19 amongst two large groups of people where COVID-19 was known to be in the room. This is a reminder of how physical distancing, masks and hand hygiene work to limit the spread of COVID-19," health officials said in a release.