Beadle County officials dealing with double-digit cases of COVID-19

In a Sunday, March 22, 2020 photo, Huron Mayor Paul Aylward and a joint city/county task force discuss the new restrictions in Huron and Beadle County based on new coronavirus cases.. (Cory Myers/The Argus Leader via AP)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — If South Dakota’s COVID-19 outbreak has an epicenter, it’s in Beadle County, which has become an early hotbed with 13 of the state’s 41 cases. Many in the county, which includes the city of Huron, say the number of infections is a wake-up call to the realities of the pandemic.

County and city officials became the first in the state to close restaurants and bars, and a sense of anxiety has settled over the community. As the state prepares to face similar circumstances elsewhere, Huron has responded with resolve and resourcefulness to keep the area’s only hospital up and running.