The Borough of Belmar, New Jersey, has canceled the 2021 St. Patrick’s Day Parade due to the coronavirus pandemic. Other Belmar events for spring and summer 2021 are on hold at this time.
In a January 5 Facebook post, the official Belmar-Lake Como St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee stated: “Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, the 2021 parade cannot be held due to COVID-19. The parade committee is exploring options for other types of celebrations this season, so stay tuned for updates. Thank you as always for your support.”
The parade was scheduled to take place at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 7, 2021, which would have been its 49th year. The parade planning committee is still hoping to conduct some sort of virtual celebration and is holding a fundraiser at Bar Anticipation in Lake Como, New Jersey, on January 31. The event begins at 2:00 p.m. Admission is $15.00.
Other popular spring events in Belmar, such as the annual Belmar Restaurant Tour (AKA "Dine and Discover") and the New Jersey Seafood Festival, may be postponed to the fall. Town officials continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and will decide the status of these events, as well as those taking place during the summer, on a case-by-case basis. "If we are still hot and heavy into this pandemic, we are going to have to cancel everything," said Belmar Mayor Mark Walsifer in a January 5 Coast Star article.
The Belmar Restaurant Tour typically takes place the weekend after the St. Patrick's Day Parade. This year's food tour would have been on March 14, 2021. The annual Seafood Festival in Belmar is usually held the weekend prior to Memorial Day (May 21, 22, and 23, 2021).
The Belmar Business Partnership, which is the nonprofit organization that manages the Belmar Special Improvement District, released a statement in regard to the cancellation of the 2021 Belmar St. Patrick's Day Parade.
"The Belmar Business Partnership [BBP] is disappointed to learn that the parade is canceled this year, but we understand the need to put public health and safety first during the pandemic," the BBP said.
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