The novel coronavirus has forced the cancellation of the 2020 Interior Provincial Exhibition and Stampede in Armstrong.
The tough decision was made by the board of directors and staff of the IPE with a “great deal of consultation, discussion and regret,” according to the statement issued Monday, May 4.
“Unfortunately, the fair, planned for Sept. 2, will not go ahead as planned this year,” it said. “Considering present circumstances, this decision was unavoidable.”
Directors and staff consulted with peers from BC Fairs, Canadian Associations of Agricultural Fairs and Exhibitions, West Coast Amusements and the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association along with the daily updates from provincial and federal health authorities before coming to its conclusion.
“We are deeply grateful to our many donors and sponsors who have generously donated in 2020 and previous years,” the statement said. “We are fully committed to ensuring your contributions now and in the future go towards offering a top-not fair for our community in the future.”
The cancellation of the IPE follows news of the Calgary Stampede, K-Days in Edmonton and PNE cancelling events that were slated to run in July and August.
The 2020 fair would have marked the 121st annual IPE.
“We love what we do but will not put our community, staff, membership, volunteers, or sponsors at risk,” the IPE website reads.
The 12th annual Armstrong MetalFest, which was to run July 17-18 and attract hundreds, was cancelled May 1.