PHILADELPHIA – Some of Philadelphia's most iconic events, including the 2020 Thanksgiving Day and 2021 New Years Day Mummers parades, as well as the Philadelphia Marathon and Broad Street Run are among the latest events to be canceled because of COVID-19.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney announced Tuesday the cancellation of all large events on public property for six months due to COVID-19 coronavirus concerns.
The moratorium on publicly-advertised events on public property lasts until Feb. 28, 2021, the mayor said.
Indoor events are capped at 25 people and outdoor events are capped at 50, Kenney said.
Theaters in Pennsylvania remain closed on a governor's order. Masks are mandatory in public spaces in Pennsylvania.
During the next six months, permits for public events — including parades, carnivals, flea markets, festivals, block parties and concerts — the city's special events department will not be accepted, reviewed or granted, Kenney said.
Constitutionally-protected activities — protests, for example — will be permitted as a First Amendment right, the mayor explained.
The city's COVID-19 infection rate has been stable, according to the city's Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley.
Farley said the city wants "to keep it that way."
Since the start of the pandemic in the Philadelphia area more than four months ago, 1,636 city residents have died, Farley reported.
Last week 148 new cases were reported, with 40 percent of the infections in people younger than 30 years old, the commissioner said.
More than 27,720 people in Philadelphia and 93,900 in the state have tested positive, according to government data.
Tuesday's event moratorium is an extension of the city's March ban on large gatherings. The city's St. Patrick's parade in March and the Labor Day weekend Made in America Festival were among the spring and summer events already cancelled.
The 10-mile Broad Street Run had already been rescheduled from May to October. The Philadelphia Marathon was set for November.
While some organizations could bounce back from the pause of annual events in 2020, a break could be devastating for others.
The 120-year-old Mummers Parade on New Years Day is among the struggling traditions in the city.
Follow reporter Carly Q. Romalino on Twitter: @CarlyQRomalino
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This article originally appeared on Cherry Hill Courier-Post: Philadelphia: Large gatherings, events canceled through February 2021