PHILADELPHIA—For anyone looking forward to marathons, parades and other large-scale celebrations in Philadelphia, you'll have to wait a little longer.
All large public events in Philadelphia have been canceled, officials announced Tuesday.
“I know this news will be disappointing for many Philadelphians. It was not an easy decision to make, but as we continue to battle COVID-19 and try to restore some since of normalcy in our society, we know there will be many difficult decisions to come," Mayor Jim Kenney said during a news conference. "The health and safety of Philadelphia residents, workers and visitors must be our top priority."
According to the mayor, the city’s office of special events will not accept, review, process or approve applications as well as issue permits or enter into agreements for special events or public gatherings of 50 people or more on public property through the end of February.
The moratorium will apply to special events and public gatherings, including but not limited to festivals, parades, concerts, carnivals, fairs and flea markets. This also includes such popular events as the Broad Street Run, Thanksgiving Day Parade, Christmas Parade, Rock and Roll half marathon and the Mummers Parade.
In addition, the mayor said permit applications for residential block permits will not be accepted until further notice. A timeline for when such activities will resume will be communicated as soon as possible, the mayor said.
"To be clear, this hold on large public events does not apply to demonstrations and first amendment protected activities, outdoor gatherings that are not publically advertised, such as family picnics and outdoor weddings, group recreational activities for youth and adults with less than 25 participants and events and gatherings taking place on private property, including performance venues and stadiums," Mayor Kenney said.
For those gatherings that are allowed, the mayor said event producers and venue managers must follow applicable guidance from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.