Cinco de Mayo Festival in Sunnyside for 2021 Cancelled

Rebecca Fink

COVID is still a threat and should still be taken very seriously. Masks are still mandated, and Social Distancing is no longer a “new thing” but rather should be a normal practice now for everyone. Festivals and large gathering activities are still and will remain affected by this Pandemic and the Cinco de Mayo Festivities in Sunnyside, for the second year in a row has been cancelled.

In a statement release from the Office of City Manager, Martin Casey we learn that the cancellation is only another way the City of Sunnyside is trying to protect those citizens who have come to love and enjoy this annual gathering.

“Acting on the guidance of state public health officials, the City of Sunnyside has cancelled in-person Cinco de Mayo events planned for April 30-May 2, 2021. Cinco de Mayo has drawn 25,000 participants historically. Adhering to the state’s strict public health guidance for fairs and festivals would have made holding the event infeasible, including:

Only 400 participants could be allowed in the event area at a time.

Controlled entry points to the event area would be needed.

Face masks and 6’ social distancing would be required.

Event coordinator, A&A Promotions, and the City have been working closely with health officials to monitor the status of the pandemic and to try to adapt to the evolving public health requirements.

This was a very difficult decision for all involved, as we know this action has an economic and emotional impact on residents, vendors, and performers. However, we also understand the need to protect the health and well-being of our community.

We are already looking ahead to our next signature event, Sunshine Days, coming up in September. We urge residents to keep up their efforts to follow health guidelines and get vaccinated so that event restrictions are fully eased this summer.

As of April 12, 2021, Yakima County has reported 29,629 COVID-19 cases, and 395 residents have lost their lives to COVID-19. When we canceled Cinco de Mayo events in 2020, there were just 147 cases and 3 deaths reported in Yakima County.”

As our country continues to recovery and moves toward healing, it is nice to know that the City of Sunnyside has the best interests of its community at mind as they continue to make the hard decisions of cancellations and closures.