HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – It was an announcement that broke the hearts of so many in western Massachusetts and beyond, the cancellation of the 69th annual Holyoke St. Patrick’s Parade due to early pandemic concerns.
Following other major events already being canceled for 2021, where does this local parade stand?
22News met up with the spokeswoman for the Holyoke St. Patricks Parade Committee, Hayley Dunn, to ask her the highly anticipated question; will the parade go on in 2021?
Dunn told 22News, “We’re still hoping that we can have a parade on March 21, 2021. Certainly, a lot of factors will come into play.”
As of right now, Dunn says the plan is to still have the parade happen in 2021. This is welcoming news for Holyoke’s economy, after suffering a massive loss this year when hundreds of thousands of people didn’t come to western Massachusetts and millions of dollars in revenue wasn’t generated.
“We’re all hoping for a broad vaccine. We’ll see what happens but we’ll be ready to make a decision probably within the next month,” said Dunn.
But not having a vaccine yet distributed has resulted in the cancellation of next year’s Greater Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the postponement of the Boston Marathon to fall of 2021. Dunn told 22News that in terms of planning the 2021 parade in Holyoke they’re behind the game.
“In a non-COVID year, we’re planning for the next parade in April right after the preceding parade,” said Dunn. “Takes about a year to invite all the bands, the participants, to select our award winners. But if anybody can do it in a short time frame.. the Holyoke St. Patrick’s Parade Committee would be able to do that.”
So again, a final decision on the status of the parade will be announced in about a month.
22News will have that update for you as soon as we get it.