The 2021 National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade has been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It will mark the second straight year that coronavirus concerns have scotched the annual event, as the 2020 parade was also called off in the spring as the pandemic took hold.
The festival, slated for March 20-April 11, will otherwise continue with a full schedule, officials said.
“The health and safety of our festival staff and attendees, sponsors and other stakeholders remain the festival’s top priority,” Diana Mayhew, president and CEO of the National Cherry Blossom Festival, said in a statement.
The festival is working with the D.C. mayor’s office, the National Park Service and other sponsors and stakeholders to plan next year’s event.
“While we know the community will miss the tradition of the parade — a striking and celebratory procession down Constitution Avenue — plans to present the 2021 Festival in innovative and fun ways are already underway,” Mayhew said.
Meanwhile, the inaugural Spirit of Spring 5K virtual run and walk will be held Nov. 6-15 with proceeds benefiting festival programming, which will remain predominantly free and open to the public, festival officials said.
For more details, go to nationalcherryblossomfestival.org or follow the festival on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.