Prairieland Park is Saskatoon’s designated World Trade Centre — arguably one of the best sites in western Canada to host events big and small. But it’s losing business during the coronavirus pandemic and postponing major events.
Over 30 events have been moved out of March and April, and organized are hopeful those can be re-booked down the road.
“Standing outside the building today it is publicly closed, so we are not allowing anyone in the building. Most everybody is working from home,” said Kristy Rempel, manager of the Saskatoon Prairieland Corp.
The biggest event that uses the entire park every year is The Ex and organizers are hoping it is able to keep its scheduled date later this year.
The Ex is scheduled for Aug. 4-9.
Organizers are hopeful they can make those dates and are planning as such.
“You know we are really hopefully optimistic, The work they are doing right now, collectively as a city, as a province is what is going to flatten this curve so that those events in the summer can go on,” Rempel said.
She added the loss of The Ex would result in the loss of tens of thousands of dollars in economic activity.
Organizers said that if they have to adapt, they will do so, including bringing in Canadian talent for the shows due to border restrictions.
Something like that may come into play, but organizers said its too early to tell.
“There are vendors from out of town, there are acts coming from the States, there are a lot of things that are already in the works that are already being done,” Rempel said.
“So we are continuing forward with the idea, that collectively as a body we are working hard enough to do those things in the summer.”
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers across Canada are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. In Saskatchewan, international travellers are already required to self-isolate for 14 days upon their return to the province.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.
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