An Illinois town is holding Juneteenth and gay pride celebrations despite canceling its Fourth of July festivities.
“My home town of Evanston, Illinois is having a Juneteenth Parade and a Gay Pride Parade, but is cancelling the 4th of July Parade & Fireworks,” said RealClearPolitics co-founder Tom Bevan on Twitter.
The city commemorated Juneteenth after President Joe Biden signed a bill making it a federal holiday last week, holding a parade and musical performances at a local park. The city also has a gay pride parade planned for later this month.
The celebrations come after Evanston canceled this year’s Fourth of July celebration over COVID-19 concerns.
“Based on concern for public health due to the unpredictability of the pandemic’s impact, vaccination rates, and in cooperation with our local authorities, the Trustees of the Evanston Fourth of July Association voted to cancel the Fun Run, Parade, Palatine Concert Band performance and Lakefront Fireworks show on July 4, 2021. However, we are committed and already working toward an Independence Day celebration that will be safe, creative and build community,” the city said in a March statement explaining the decision.
Evanston did not report a new COVID-19 case last week for the first time since the pandemic began, while 87% of city residents 12 and over have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. But organizers have not indicated they plan to rethink the Independence Day cancellation.
“There are deadlines for permits and to secure the fireworks, as well as taking applications for the parade that happen early in the year,” organizer Jamie Black told Fox News. “We erred on the side of caution. If things weren’t better, we would have been criticized for being a superspreader event.”
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Original Author: Michael Lee