It seems 2020 in Toronto could the year of... no fun? Event cancellations in the 6ix may stretch longer than anticipated, John Tory warns. Although we're all hoping the effects of COVID-19 in Toronto clear up soon enough, the Mayor hinted that all large-scale events this year will be cancelled if they need to be, all the way up to holiday festivities like the Santa Claus Parade.
On Tuesday night, April 28, Tory shed some light on the status of future events in the city.
Just as Ontario Premier Doug Ford isn't risking sending Ontario kids back to school too soon, Tory isn't taking any chances when it comes to large gatherings and events, even into the winter months.
And, in fact, he warned residents to prepare for event closures from July 1 celebrations all the way through to the Santa Claus Parade and other winter events.
“They are all on the table," Tory told CP24 on Tuesday night.
"You know, people may say 'Santa Claus Parade, November!'
"Well, if at November we’re much better off but things are still delicate in terms of our crowd of a million people gathering out on the sides of our streets and the medical officer of health says to me that we should cancel the Santa Claus Parade, then with deep regret — as has been the case with Pride, Caribbean Carnival, and a host of other things — then I will go to the Santa Claus Parade people and recommend that it be cancelled.”
The City has already cancelled all major events until the start of July, including the hugely popular Pride festival.
Canada Day celebrations on or around July 1 are usually some of the biggest festivities across the country.
For what it's worth, Tory says the city hasn't made a decision on Canada Day itself yet.
A bustling street party seems out of the question right now, but the Mayor wants to see the day celebrated somehow.
"We haven’t yet made a decision on Canada Day although all the municipalities around us have cancelled their Canada Day festivities," he added.
"I’m really searching, at the very least, to make sure we have a spectacular fireworks display somewhere everybody in the city can see it."
However, he warned several more events are very likely to be cancelled in upcoming weeks.
Earlier on Tuesday, just hours before Tory's comments, Dr. Eileen de Villa confirmed Toronto now has over 5000 cases and over 300 deaths from COVID-19.