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Despite restrictions lifting, these summer festivals are still deploying COVID-19 safety measures


Two long-standing Edmonton festivals will go ahead this summer as restrictions in the province are set to lift on Canada Day.

Edmonton’s Heritage Festival will welcome back pavilions to Hawrelak Park. It will be a slightly modified event with half entry limitations, and two thirds of the normal pavilions allowed in the space.

Jim Gibbon, the executive director of the Edmonton Heritage Association, told CTV News Edmonton the festival will be much more spread out.

White circles will be painted onto the grass to ensure distance between cohorts. This will allow people to eat and drink safely in their own designated space.

Gibbon said being able to have the event come back this year provides a sense of normalcy.

“There was a lot of disbelief,” he noted.

“People were a little taken aback that we’re coming out of things.”

The Heritage Festival is a collection of Alberta-based cultural groups, that come together to share their history, song and dance, food, and so much more.

“To get a chance to get together, and share this beautiful message of multiculturalism, I think it’s incredibly important,” Gibbon added.

Entry is free, but people will need to get time-entry passes online as only a fixed number of people are allowed into the park per hour.

The festival will run July 31 to Aug. 2, and masks will be required.


As for Taste of Edmonton, it’s also planning to make its return to an in-person event from July 22 to Aug. 1.

The festival will be returning to Sir Winston Churchill Square now that construction in the area is complete.

But, what’s top of mind for the organizers this year is ensuring health and safety for visitors.

“We’ve spread out our restaurant partners, usually they’re side by side. All the tents this year will have a six-foot gap,” Donovan Vienneau, the general manager of Taste of Edmonton, said.

Vienneau said in a normal year the event usually hosts 75 food and beverage partners, but this year it’s pared down to 53.

While there will be some new changes for the festival, Vienneau told CTV News Edmonton pricing will stay the same as it was in 2019.

“We’ve introduced a third menu item with a max two-ticket value,” he explained. “That way it’s going to give people coming to Taste of Edmonton more options.”

“We’re excited to showcase Edmonton restaurants that need the support.”

Tickets for the event can be purchased ahead of time online.

Both Heritage Festival and Taste of Edmonton will be using tap technology for purchases.

With files from CTV News Edmonton’s David Ewasuk Top Stories


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