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Free drive-thru COVID-19 testing available today at fairgrounds in Viroqua

Free drive-thru COVID-19 testing available today at fairgrounds in Viroqua

Free community COVID-19 testing

Area residents participate in the free community COVID-19 testing held at the Vernon County Fairgrounds in Viroqua, Tuesday, July 7.

About 20 Wisconsin National Guard members are at the Vernon County Fairgrounds today helping the Vernon County Health Department and Emergency Management host free drive-thru COVID-19 testing until 6 p.m.

Testing began at 10 a.m., and Brandon Larson, Emergency Management director, said people were lined up in their cars before the start time.

During a media briefing held at 11 a.m., Linda Nederlo, public information officer, said 400 tests are available. “We encourage people to come,” she said.

Larson said if more than 400 tests are needed, the county will make a request to hold more testing on another day.

Nederlo said Viroqua is a central location for testing, and testing is available to not only county residents but also those living outside of Vernon County.

Last week, Larson said, the health department opened the drive-thru testing to asymptomatic (those without COVID-19 symptoms) people age 5 and older. Initially, the testing was announced for those experiencing one or more symptoms of COVID-19. He said test results will be available within 24 to 72 hours.

Those who are participating in the drive-thru testing will be asked screening questions as they enter and the test will consist of a nasal swab. The test will then be sent to a state-approved lab. The Vernon County Health Department staff will follow up on results of all testing after the event.

To help ease traffic flow during the testing, please follow one of these two options:

  1. Enter from the north end of Viroqua, turn onto Fairlane Drive between Kwik Trip and Sleepy Hollow Chevrolet dealership. Turn right on Nelson Parkway. Follow signs to testing.
  2. Enter from the south end of Viroqua, turn onto Fairview Drive. Turn left onto North East Avenue Follow signs to testing.

Symptoms of COVID-19 can be mild and include:

  • Fever;
  • New loss of taste and/or smell;
  • Cough;
  • Nausea;
  • Shortness of breath;
  • Vomiting;
  • Chills;
  • Abdominal pain;
  • Muscle aches/pain;
  • Diarrhea;
  • Headache;
  • Fatigue;
  • Sore throat;
  • Runny nose.
Lines form

Drivers form two lines on the street that runs through the Vernon County Fairgrounds in Viroqua. Free COVID-19 testing was held Tuesday, July 7.

Testing sign

A sign directs drivers where to access free COVID-19 drive-thru testing on the Vernon County Fairgrounds, Tuesday, July 7.

Angela Cina can be reached at

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Vernon County Broadcaster editor

Angie Cina is editor of the Vernon County Broadcaster. Contact her at 608-637-5616.

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