Parades and other major Philly events canceled through February

Photo by M. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia

Aligning with other major cities like New York, Philadelphia decreed on Tuesday, July 14 that all large-scale events are canceled through February 28, 2021. Signature events like the Thanksgiving Day Parade, Mummers Parade, Broad Street Run, will all be placed on the shelf this year.

Mayor Jim Kenney also stated that the city will not be distributing permits for block parties and other events. This is yet another COVID-19 blow to the city, which has yet to enter the full “green phase”. The city remains in the “modified restricted green phase” of Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 reopening process. The modified measures and restrictions will remain in place through at least Saturday, August 1.

(Photo courtesy of Independence Blue Cross)

While Philadelphians will not see helium turkeys on the Ben Franklin Parkway or rapid runners on Broad Street anytime soon, the policy does not affect “performance venues and stadiums, so that would allow some professional sports possibly to return”, according to Mayor Kenney. Several sports leagues have yet to reveal their full plan for gameplay return or hint at fan involvement at the events.

As of Tuesday, Philadelphia has reported a total of 27,723 confirmed cases of COVID-19. This number includes 1,637 deaths.

As for sporting events? It seems like a no-go.

Asked about Eagles and other pro games, Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said the protocols for the major sports leagues “look pretty good” but having spectators would not be safe.

”I do think that games can be played with the kind of safety precautions that they’re proposing. I do not think that they can have spectators at those games. There’s no way for them to be safe having a crowd there,” Farley said. “I can’t say what the plans are for the league, but from a safety perspective, they can play games but not [have] crowds.”

“The Eagles are still going to be allowed to play, although without crowds. The Phillies will continue to be allowed to play, although without crowds,” Managing Director Brian Abernathy said.

Abernathy said NFL guidelines also “remind teams that local authorities have the ability to ban fans, so I don’t expect any issues.”

“We have been in communication with the Eagles. We have told them our expectations are that they don’t have fans,” Albernathy said.

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