July 11, 2020

This Year’s Old Lyme Midsummer Festival Cancelled Due to Safety Concerns

Every summer the Old Lyme Midsummer Festival attracts thousands of locals and visitors. The decision to cancel the 2020 festival has just been announced.

OLD LYME — The Old Lyme Arts District has just posted an announcement on their website, which states, “After much consideration, and with our first concern being the safety of our community, staff, volunteers, and vendors, the Old Lyme Arts District is cancelling the 2020 Old Lyme Midsummer Festival.”

The statement continues, “We recognize the Festival is a summer tradition eagerly anticipated by so many people (including us!). Thousands of people attend the Festival every summer and come from throughout the greater region. As much as we will miss you all and the midsummer excitement, we know the most important thing is protecting the health of our friends and arts family.”

With an eye on next year, the statement adds, “We are already thinking about the 2021 Festival,” noting, “2021 will also be the 100th anniversary of the Lyme Art Colonists opening their own gallery (known to us all as the Lyme Art Association.) Those artists persevered through World War I and the Flu Pandemic, creating art and in 1921 inviting the public to their new gallery to purchase and bring home treasures for their own walls.”

Concluding on a positive note, the statement reads, “We know our participating artists are creating art as we speak and we look forward to sharing it all with you – along with music, food, and fun purchases – next year. Each of our organizations will be opening as will be recommended under the Reopen Connecticut Plan. We look forward to seeing you all very soon. Stay well and stay in touch!”

Volunteer Festival Organizer Cheryl Poirier explained exclusively to LymeLine, “We also looked at the possibility that the Governor could allow for July large outdoor gatherings assuming safety measures were used. We researched how we could provide a safe Midsummer Festival with social distancing, masks, and other safety measures.”

She added, “We couldn’t guarantee at this time we would have available enough hand sanitizing stations, staffing to ensure frequent disinfecting of tables, handles, as well as other considerations. Realizing how difficult it would be to accomplish this, we decided the most prudent decision was to pause for a year and come back next year with the best procedures available.”


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