LaSalle cancels summer festivals. Here’s which ones are moving forward in Windsor-Essex

Last summer, many festivals in Windsor-Essex were cancelled due to the uncertainty of the pandemic. Despite a vaccine rollout, it’s still unclear how many will return this year. 

On Tuesday, LaSalle’s council decided to cancel its summer festivals due to COVID-19, but vowed to bring “smaller events and alternative activities” to the community. As a result, the municipality’s Strawberry Festival and Last Call Before Fall were taken off the schedule. 

The decision was met with understanding from councillors, who said they are glad to see the municipality was still planning smaller events. 

“It’s an itch right now with the community, that just something small, whether it’s farmers markets, kids events, something I think will do some good and bring some just community spirit back into the town of LaSalle and the community on a whole,”  said Counc. Anita Riccio-Spagnuolo.

The Island Unplugged Music Festival on Pelee Island did not take place in 2020 and won’t be scheduled for 2021. (Facebook/TheIslandUnplugged)

Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island told CBC News in an email Tuesday that it is currently trying to firm up a list and says in the next few weeks it should have a better idea of what festivals will be moving ahead. 

But the organization did provide a list of a few local events that it says will be taking place at this time. These include: 

  • Art in the Park.
  • Open Streets Kingsville (Saturday night events).
  • Amherstburg Open Air Weekends.
  • Hogs for Hospice.
  • Art by the River.
  • Downtown Windsor Farmers’ Market.
  • WindsorEats Food Hall.

With the city renewing the parklet program, the organization said it anticipates there will be other events that use the additional outdoor space. 

Events that have received some funding from the province include the Windsor International Film Festival, Hogs for Hospice, Bluesfest, Mill St. Market and Island Unplugged, according Tourism Windsor Essex. 

In a message to CBC News, president of Pelee Island Cultural Events and Festival Chair Cathy Miller said that the committee “plugged the plug” on Island Unplugged in the fall of last year as the uncertainty of the pandemic meant they couldn’t fully plan ahead for the event. 

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