SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — Organizers of San Francisco Pride announced Tuesday this year’s parade and celebration has been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
This was the celebration’s 50th anniversary and was originally scheduled for Saturday & Sunday, June 27-28.
Organizers said said they expected upward of a million people to attend this year’s the parade.
“This was not a decision we arrived at lightly,” Executive Director Fred Lopez said. “With heavy hearts, we have decided not to go forward with the Parade and Celebration in 2020.”
Lopez says it’s in the best interest of public health.
“All of the uncertainty like I said earlier about when we can have large scale events, it just makes it too difficult to have a large scale event and really to give san Francisco pride the justice that it deserves right?” Lopez said.
A damper for attendees and also businesses across the city, the cancellation means millions of dollars lost.
“We lost over $10 million just closing down Moscone Center and the loss that we got from conferences and so SF Pride is almost like a citywide conference in this way. So we’re talking about the loss of millions of dollars which will have major impacts on small businesses, restaurants, bars and retail,” Jay Cheng said.
Jay Cheng with San Francisco’s Chamber of Commerce agrees with the decision but says these types of cancellations will have a domino effect.
“When we talk about the sports games that we’ve lost, when we talk about the conferences we lost, you know the city budget deficit is going to be over a billion dollars this year and I think that says a little bit about how significant the economic impact is going to be,” Cheng said.
The city says now is the time to support your local businesses.
As for Pride, they’re working on a way for all of us to celebrate together virtually from home.
“The only thing that we have specifically is something still evolving itself in that InterPride and that’s a global association of Pride organizations from around the world. They are planning a virtual Global Pride which will happen on Saturday June 27th and San Francisco Pride said we will already be a part of that and so were interested in what that will look like,”
SF Pride will be announcing additional collaborations, primarily in digital formats, to commemorate Pride throughout the summer.
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