Vanilla Ice to Perform in Texas for Fourth of July Concert Despite Rising Coronavirus Cases


Rapper Vanilla Ice will be performing at the Emerald Point Bar & Grill in Austin, Texas, on Friday, despite a significant surge in coronavirus cases in the state.

Vanilla Ice, whose real name is Robert Matthew Van Winkle, will be headlining the outdoor concert, which is taking place in celebration of the Fourth of July holiday.

“We are looking forward to a fun and safe weekend with good friends, good food, and good music while celebrating America,” the bar wrote in an Instagram post on Tuesday.

Artists Myke Miller and Hip Hip Hooray will also be performing at the event, called the “Independence Day Throwback Beach Party.”

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Texas is currently seeing record-breaking numbers of new COVID-19 cases, with 8,123 on Wednesday, according to data from The New York Times. The number of hospitalizations in the state — 6,904, as of July 1 — has more than quadrupled since Memorial Day, when bars and restaurants reopened.

In an executive order issued on June 26, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered bars to close again, and restaurants to reduce their capacity. Gatherings of over 100 people must be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions, the order said.

“At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars,” Abbott said in a release. “The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and enhance public health.”

On Monday, Vanilla Ice shared a video to his Instagram page featuring a crowd of fans from a previous concert, captioning the post, “I can’t wait to get back to this.”

“The 90s were the best. We didn’t have coronavirus, or cell phones, or computers,” he continued. “we had 5.0‘s, blockbuster, Beavis and Butthead, Wayne’s world, Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan. And Mortal Kombat is still better than fortnight [sic] but we got out of the house, We danced, we invented house parties in the 90s.”

“The last of the great decades,” the rapper concluded, adding the hashtag #IMissThenineties.

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