COVID-19 stops Tecumseh Santa Parade

The annual Christmas in Tecumseh festival is held on November 25, 2016. (Photo courtesy Town of Tecumseh)

A local holiday tradition is the latest casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Town of Tecumseh’s parks and recreation department submitted a report to town council, recommending the cancellation of the annual Christmas in Tecumseh event as well as the town’s Santa Parade.

Councillors approved the recommendation at its meeting Tuesday night.

The report cited concerns over the number of people attending, along with the uncertainty of any pandemic control guidelines imposed by the Ontario Ministry of Health and the local health unit. Challenges concerning the safety of volunteers, staff, and entertainers were also cited.

The parade is one of two that are held in Tecumseh each year. The other is the Corn Festival Parade which takes place in August. Corn Fest was cancelled this summer due to the pandemic.

Christmas in Tecumseh features holiday activities spread across the area bordered by Tecumseh Town Hall, the OPP detachment, and Tecumseh Arena. The two events usually take place on the fourth Friday of November.

In the meantime, Tecumseh will explore options for alternative holiday activities.

“Parks staff are currently working on some modified programming that would be delivered virtually, similar to the summer programs where videos and activities were posted online in our Virtual Recreation Complex,” Tecumseh Manager of Strategic Initiatives Lesley Reeves wrote in an email to Blackburn News.