To continue to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help provide predictability to major event organizers, the City of Toronto is extending the cancellation of in-person City-led and City-permitted outdoor events to September 6.
Today’s announcement includes festivals and other large, in-person gatherings, held at outdoor sites managed by the City or other public locations, such as roads, parks and civic squares.
The City understands the importance of these events to Toronto’s vitality, liveability and prosperity. City staff are working in close collaboration with event organizers, who in every instance possible have been consulted on this approach and given advance notice of this decision. The City is committed to working closely with event organizers to help them manage through 2021 and come back stronger in 2022.
Mass participation festivals and events require long lead times for planning, rely on City sites, supports or permissions, and present higher public health risks given limits to physical distancing and exposure to attendees from outside of the area. The need to sustain essential services also limits the City’s ability to support third-party event organizers.
Event organizers have asked the City for as much advance notification as possible to enable them to make sound decisions in support of public health efforts and their business needs, accessing insurance, supporting impacted employees, managing sponsors and developing alternative approaches, such as virtual events. Providing this cancellation notice will allow many events to avoid incurring unnecessary costs and access insurance and other supports.
This decision, made in consultation with Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, the City’s Emergency Operations Centre, Toronto Police Service and mass participation event organizers, follows the previous cancellation of all such events up to July 1 and supports the directive that physical distancing is critical to stopping the spread of COVID-19.
The following is a list of major in-person events impacted by this decision. This list has been provided by permitting divisions and event status may be subject to change. Many of these events will be offered virtually. For the most up-to-date status of an event, please contact the event organizer directly.
All event organizers were contacted prior to today’s announcement. Event organizers with further questions are encouraged to contact the relevant City permitting bodies, Toronto Police Service officers/liaisons or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information about supports available to the arts and culture sector during the COVID-19 pandemic are available at www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-economic-support-recovery-for-businesses/covid-19-business-sector-resources/.
This announcement does not include permits issued by the City’s Parks Forestry and Recreation Division for activities in parks and other City facilities/sites that may be permitted under the Province of Ontario’s framework. Professional sporting events are also not included in this decision – those events rely on permissions from the provincial and federal governments in addition to Toronto Public Health.
The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check the City’s COVID-19 web page, www.toronto.ca/covid-19, for answers to commonly asked questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311.
“The City and the vast majority of Toronto residents are doing everything we can right now to stop the spread of COVID-19 and get vaccinated. Following the public health measures and getting vaccinated as soon as you’re eligible will help us bring this pandemic to an end so that we can safely gather together once again. We will continue to support the City’s major events through these tough times and will do everything we can to make sure they come back stronger in 2022.”
– Mayor John Tory
Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.