COVID-19 restrictions prevent popular events and reshape others
With summer just around the corner, the Town of St. Marys regrets to announce that some of its beloved events are cancelled until August 31 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The traditional Canada Day picnic at Cadzow Park will not occur due to restrictions on public gatherings, as the celebration typically sees almost 1,000 attendees.
This doesn’t mean that there won’t be a celebration on July 1. “We will live-stream the flag raising and live entertainment on social media to replicate the ‘Cadzow experience’,” explains Town of St. Marys Events Coordinator Andrea Macko.
“As everyone doesn’t use social media, we’re also planning some non-virtual events,” Macko adds. At noon, we ask that all residents go outside to sing, play or stand for O Canada — led by the incredible carillon at St. Marys United Church. The traditional colouring contest will happen, and a new red-and-white baking contest will take place: details will be announced soon but home bakers should begin perusing recipes!
The Museum, Library and Pyramid Centre are coming together to offer a themed “Canada Week” of live-streamed activities in the week preceding Canada Day. Look for a complete schedule of programming in mid-June. Canada Day celebrations are funded annually by Heritage Canada grants.
Unfortunately, Melodies at the Museum, another summertime favourite, is fully cancelled for this summer. The eight-week concert series is a fundraiser for the St. Marys Museum, with performers sponsored by local businesses and individuals.
“Between restrictions on gatherings and asking for donations when there are greater needs in the community, cancelling Melodies was the correct decision, if a sad decision,” says St. Marys Museum Curator and Archivist Amy Cubberley.
A new event, Highlight St. Marys, scheduled to take place Saturday, Aug. 15 in the downtown, is cancelled for the same reasons, notes Macko. In April, Homecoming+Heritage 2020 announced its postponement to 2021, and recently, the Kinsmen Club announced that its popular Summerfest is cancelled for 2020.
“We hope that by taking the necessary precautions now, we’ll be able to bring back these events in 2021,” says Macko. “This summer, it is more important to focus on the health of our community.”