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No Santa Claus parade in downtown Peterborough in 2021 despite outdoor gathering restrictions lifted

The City of Peterborogh has a number of road closures for the Kinsmen Santa Claus Parade on Dec. 3. Greg Davis/ Global News Peterborough file

Although many restrictions on outdoor gathering have been lifted in Ontario, organizers say the annual Kinsmen Santa Claus Parade in downtown Peterborough will not be going ahead.

Dave Commerford, chairman of the event, told Global News Peterborough on Sunday evening about the decision made by the Kinsmen Club of Peterborough — the second year in a row the event has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2020 version would have been the 47th annual parade.

Read more: Ontario removes capacity limits allowing for Santa Claus parades, other outdoor public events

“The province has lifted the capacity limits for outdoor events, so long as attendees wear masks when a physical distance of two metres cannot be maintained,” he said. “We cannot control the number of people that attend our event, nor can we guarantee physical distancing and the wearing of face masks.”

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Commerford notes the parade in past years has attracted more than 15,000 people who line George Street to catch a glimpse of Santa Claus and the dozens of floats as they make their way to Morrow Park.

“This is too many people for us to monitor during the evening parade,” he said.

Commerford notes the Kinsmen Club is working with a couple of other groups on possibly holding an event in which Santa Claus will tour the city.

“I know this will be disappointing to many but we want the parade to be safe for all, especially the young,” he said.

Click to play video: 'Late-season outdoor gatherings return under new health measures'
Late-season outdoor gatherings return under new health measures

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