Summer of nothing?

by Keith Corcoran

As postponements of fairs, festivals and other major South Shore events continue to mount up, the season is beginning to look a bit like something television viewers might relate to as a Seinfeld Summer.

The 32nd Nova Scotia Folk Art Festival slated for Lunenburg and Chester Race Week are the latest annual traditions on ice until 2021 because of coronavirus concerns that are turning the 2020 warm weather season into the summer of nothing.

"The situation with the pandemic in Nova Scotia, although seeming to be stable, is not something we can be sure about and to put race organizers, the Chester Yacht Club, volunteers and race committees in jeopardy would be irresponsible and reckless," reads a note from the six-member steering committee overseeing the famous keel boat regatta.

The guidance from Sail Nova Scotia and the province "is encouraging in their support of families getting out on their boats but clearly no regattas," reported David Creighton, the Chester Yacht Club's (CYC) commodore.

"I take my hat off to the executive, the steering committee, the learn-to-sail team and the CYC club manager who give their time and share their passion for the sport, the club and the community during these uncertain times," Creighton said in a notice advising of the postponement.

Meanwhile, supporters of the folk art festival were notified "limitations and uncertainties" connected to COVID-19 factored in the decision to scrap the event this year.

"We, the Lunenburg Heritage Society and the committee of volunteers who manage the festival on behalf of the society, fully intend to be back" next August, event chairwoman Sue Kelly said in the notice.

"We have over 50 returning artists waiting in the wings as well as eight artists who were going to show their work for the first time at the festival. Folk art is alive and well ..."

In recent weeks, organizers of the automotive celebration South Shore in Motion and the Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival announced 2020 versions of their events were shelved.

The Hank Snow festival and Privateer Days in Queens County, along with the South Shore Exhibition, and Scarecrow Festival in Lunenburg County, are also among entertainment casualties of 2020 due to concerns surrounding the pandemic.

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