Coronavirus: A Taste of Saskatchewan, Rock the River, Show & Shine cancelled

SaskTel said it is considering whether it will host Taste of Saskatchewan next year.
A Taste of Saskatchewan, Rock the River and Show & Shine Weekend have been cancelled in Saskatoon due to coronavirus restrictions. File / Global News

Three more popular summer events in Saskatoon are cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A Taste of Saskatchewan and Rock 102’s Rock the River are no longer taking place this year due to COVID-19 restrictions, organizers said.

READ MORE: Saskatoon Exhibition cancelled for first time in 135 years due to coronavirus

“After careful consideration, and in following the latest guidance from provincial authorities, we are sad to announce that SaskTel Centre’s two summer marquee events will not take place in 2020,” said Scott Ford, SaskTel Centre’s executive director.

“Given the guidelines set out by the provincial government regarding mass gatherings, we are unable to proceed with these events. The health and wellbeing of our festival fans, artists, restaurant vendors, partners and staff is our top priority.”

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This year would have been A Taste of Saskatchewan’s 25th anniversary.

The event attracts over 100,000 visitors each year to the bank of the South Saskatchewan River to sample food from Saskatoon restaurants.

It also features bands and performers over the six-day event.

Rock the River was slated to take place Aug. 14 to 16.

Ford said organizers are working with their 2020 festival lineup artists to see if they can perform in 2021. The festival is scheduled for Aug. 20 to 22.

Artists in the 2020 lineup included Dennis DeYoung and the music of Styx, The Orchestra featuring members of Electric Light Orchestra and April Wine.

People who purchased tickets for 2020 will have those honoured for 2021, SaskTel Centre said.

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Refunds will be made upon request for the next 30 days and all ticket purchasers will receive an email with further instructions, organizers said.

READ MORE: Safety and financial concerns factors for postponed summer festivals

Rock 102 said its annual Show & Shine Weekend is also being postponed. The car show runs alongside Rock the River.

“This was not a decision that was made lightly,” said Rock 102’s Morning Show host, Shack.

“This is the first time in its 39-year history that we have had to postpone. We understand how important the event is to so many people in the community, but the public’s safety is incredibly important to us.”

Organizers say it is the largest outdoor classic car show in Western Canada, typically attracting more than 40,000 people to downtown Saskatoon.