East York’s Canada Day festivities, Pride Toronto, and the Toronto Jazz Festival are among the casualties—for the second year in a row—of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The in-person events of a long list of celebrations have been cancelled by the city, though many of the organizers expect to continue online this year.
“I want to thank all of these organizations for understanding the need to avoid large in-person gatherings in the coming months and thank you to those who have worked to offer virtual events to keep the spirit of these celebrations and in some cases the fundraising efforts going during these tough times,” Mayor John Tory said, in announcing the cancellations. “I strongly encourage the business community and as many Toronto residents as possible to support these events and the causes they in turn support.”
The city is cancelling major outdoor events up to July 1. This includes festivals and other large, in-person gatherings held at outdoor venues run by the city or in public locations, such as roads, parks and civic squares.
This extends the previous cancellation of events up to March 31, based on recommendations of public health officials.
Some events, like Doors Open Toronto, have been cancelled altogether.
Others—including Pride Toronto, Canadian Music Week and the Sporting Life 10K run—are planning to hold virtual events.
Meanwhile, some like the TD Toronto Jazz Festival are as yet undecided as to whether to carry on online or shut down for the year.
East York’s Canada Day parade, festival and fireworks were not mentioned specifically in the city news release, but they may be expected to suffer the same fate as celebrations on July 1 in North York and Scarborough, which were mentioned as being cancelled.
Last year East York held virtual events to mark the day, but it has not revealed its plans for 2021 yet.
The Beaches Jazz Festival, which usually takes place in July and went virtual last summer, has also not posted information about performances this year. Its website has long sported a message saying, “We look forward to being back in the park and on the street in 2021. Please continue to check our website for updates.”
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