After last week's threat of by the Department of Public Health, local authorities met to discuss the appropriate response to ensure the town's safety.
Due to their proximity to Westborough, the towns of Auburn, Hopkinton, Grafton, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Upton, Worcester an Northborough were elevated to high risk for mosquito-borne illness.
Northborough's police chief, fire chief, health agent, superintendent, the public schools' athletic director and the town administrator met with others to consider steps that could be taken in reaction to the elevated mosquito-borne illness risk level.
It was determined, unanimously, that nighttime outdoor athletic activities be canceled or recheduled/postponed. Essentially, anything that would occur after 6 p.m. will be canceled or postponed, including the football game at Algonquin this Friday evening.
And on the heels of an excited announcement only weeks ago that fireworks were returning to Applefest (happening this weekend), those fireworks, and the corresponding barbecue on Saturday night, will also be canceled.
Authorities decided on the decision shortly before the Board of Selectmen meeting Monday night.
"With a heavy heart, everyone agreed that the barbecue and fireworks be canceled," said Town Administrator John Coderre. "The public health risk is just one that is not acceptable to the community."
Coderre added that more information would be coming from Superintendent of Schools Charles Gobron as well as Algonquin's athletic director Fran Whitten regarding sports schedules. Independent youth leagues, too, will be informed of the decision and "they would be hard pressed not to concur," said Coderre.
Health Agent Jamie Terry added that people should take necessary precautions by wearing long sleeve shirts, socks and bug spray, as well.
According to the press release that was issued Monday evening, West Nile Virus infected mosquitoes have been found in 106 communities from nine counties so far in 2012. Health officials predic that the state is on track to have the greatest number of west nile virus positive mosquito pools since it was first seen in the state in 2000.
Northborough has not had an instance of EEE, but did have a case of west nile virus in recent years.