The Rose of Tralee festival has been cancelled for the first time in its more than six decade history with the announcement that the 2020 August festival will not be going ahead.
The Rose of Tralee was due to take place from August 21 – 25 this year, but has now been postponed to August 2021 due to the cornavirus pandemic.
A statement from the festival organisers said they have been discussing in recent weeks about how to safely deliver some or all of the 2020 festival, but considering health guidelines, they have decided not to go ahead this year.
The five day pageant is a huge annual tourism draw for Kerry, with visitors coming from around Ireland and the world.
The full statement reads:
“The impact of Covid-19 continues to be felt worldwide and our thoughts are with all of those who have been affected by the very sad losses this pandemic is causing.”
“These are unprecedented times for all and the health and safety our communities remains the utmost concern.”
“Over the past few weeks, our team have been considering how best we could safely deliver some, or all, of our 2020 Festival events.”
“Taking into account Government guidelines, the safety of our communities and the ability to deliver a wonderful Festival; we have decided to postpone our 2020 Festival until August 2021.”
“This is the first time in our 61 year history that the Festival has been postponed, but it is the right decision as we all play our part right now in keeping each other safe and well.”
“The Rose of Tralee International Festival operates on a yearlong basis, in Irish communities worldwide; and we will continue to harness the goodwill of our extended Rose Family in supporting communities and charitable efforts over the next 12 months.”
“Similarly, we will each have a role to play in restoring our communities and economies following the pandemic.”
“We look forward to coming together in celebration, showcasing our wonderful communities; and welcoming you all to Tralee in August 2021.”
“In the meantime, we salute the leadership and the selfless efforts of frontline and support staff everywhere; and among them the efforts by many of our Roses, Rose Escorts and wider Rose Family, including our 2019 Rose of Tralee, Dr Sinéad Flanagan.”
“Our immediate priority is to support the health and civic authorities in doing whatever we can to keep each other safe and well, and ultimately to protect lives.”
image: 2018 Galway Rose selection