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Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Owen Sound Defers Decision On Event Cancellations

Owen Sound | by Claire McCormack  

Council wants to look at options before cancelling Canada Day and Harbourfest.

The City of Owen Sound is still looking at which events it will have to cancel due to COVID-19.

A staff report was presented at Monday night's (May 11) council meeting, outlining what may have to be cancelled and what might be far enough ahead in the calendar to hold off on cancelling.

So far, a number of City organized events have already had to be cancelled including Doors Open, the Riverside Reunion, and the Home and Cottage Expo.

Taking into account various emergency restrictions, the likelihood of them being lifted in time, and other restrictions that will likely remain for a long time, staff recommended at Canada Day and Harbourfest be cancelled and some other event be planned in their place later in the year.

Mayor Ian Boddy says council decided to defer a decision on cancelling those events, " We want to have another look at all of the options and all of the costs, all of the financial supports," says Boddy who wonders if donor and sponsor companies for various events can afford to participate in things this year.

In the same report, staff recommended council wait before cancelling Harbour Nights and Outdoor Movie Nights, partly because they are smaller, outdoor events that may be in line with eventual distancing guidelines.

Boddy says the City is also keeping in mind, the possibility of having an event when the COVID-19 pandemic is over, to make up for all the lost opportunities to gather, "Many councillors are concerned that we want to do something to liven the spirits around here after everything that everyone's been through to be able to celebrate the community."

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