Vancouver’s annual Celebration of Light fireworks cancelled due to COVID-19

The Honda Celebration of Light will not take place in 2020, organizers say, following comments from health authorities over the weekend.

The Vancouver Fireworks Festival Society made the announcement Monday afternoon in an emailed statement quashing hopes the annual fireworks competition in Vancouver’s English Bay will take place during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our team has been following guidance from the relevant government authorities and cautiously preparing for our summer event,” the statement read. 

“We must now accept the reality that the largest public event in our province will not happen as planned in July 2020.”

Organizers said the event, which they called “British Columbia’s largest event,” is the longest-running offshore fireworks competition in the world, having been held for 30 years. Over 1.3 million people come to the event annually, they said.

The 2020 fireworks were supposed to be held on three nights: July 25, July 29 and Aug. 1.

The organizers added they were looking at options for “a different type of celebration in 2020” and said an announcement with details could come soon.

Over the weekend, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said it was not realistic for Vancouver’s Pride Parade or the Pacific National Exhibition to go forward.

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen countless events cancelled in B.C. and around the world in 2020.

Henry said Friday some restrictions could be loosened in May but warned large gatherings won’t be happening for some time.

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