Caribana Festival Cancelled for the first time in 52 years
For the past 52 years, travelers from all over have made their way to Toronto to participate in Caribana– Toronto’s Caribbean Carnival celebration. After weeks of monitoring the news surrounding COVID-19, festival organizers have decided it was best to cancel this year’s gathering.
The month-long festival usually begins in July and runs into August. This is the first time since the festival started that it will not take place.
“Taking into consideration the mass crowds that attend the events present a tremendous risk regarding the spread of the virus, it is therefore unanimous that the priority must be the health and safety of our patrons and having weighed all these considerations there is no choice but to cancel this year’s festival,” organizers said in a statement.
If things surrounding the virus change by July 1, the city will allow a non-traditional version of the event to take place the first weekend in August.
“While we hope for the best in the war against COVID-19, planning and the need for certainty make the cancellation of the festival sensible though very sad,” Toronto Mayor John Tory said. “Fingers crossed we can still celebrate in a non-traditional format.”
Caribana is the latest large global event to be postponed or canceled due to COVID-19. Others include the 2020 Summer Olympics, Essence Fest, Cape Town Jazz Fest, and Coachella.