VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Pungo Strawberry Festival has been canceled for the second straight year due to the pandemic.
The festival is usually held over Memorial Day weekend, but organizers say they didn’t want “to bring large crowds together unless we feel certain it is in a safe and healthy manner, even outdoors.”
Festival Chairman Todd Jones says the festival incurred substantial losses due to canceling to 2020, and says they can’t afford to cancel last minute again. The volunteer-run festival pays for the expenses up front and recoups the money during the event.
“We appreciate so many of our volunteers, vendors, charitable groups, and patrons who make this festival so successful every year,” Jones said. “We want to thank the City of Virginia Beach for continuing to support us every year and to the many sponsors who have helped us bring one of the best all-volunteer, family-friendly events to Pungo.”
The festival is the latest 2021 festival to be canceled months ahead of time. Norfolk’s Ocean View St. Patrick’s Day Parade was canceled last week.
Even though many Virginians are expected to receive vaccinations by mid-spring/early summer, the general public may not receive them until mid-summer/early fall, Gov. Northam’s office said. On Tuesday, the Trump administration reversed its stance on withholding second doses of vaccine in order to get more people vaccinated. It came days after President-elect Biden said he would reverse that policy.
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