World Buskers Festival, other events postponed due to “ambiguity” of Covid rules

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The 2021 World Buskers Festival was held in Christchurch in January with local performers.

STACY SQUIRES / Tricks

The 2021 World Buskers Festival was held in Christchurch in January with local performers.

The Christchurch Buskers Festival has been postponed and other summer events canceled due to continued Covid uncertainty.

City council announced it had canceled the New Year’s party at North Hagley Park, which normally attracts around 20,000 people with music and fireworks.

Kite Day, the annual family event scheduled for New Brighton beach in February, has also been canceled by the board.

The Bread and Circus World Buskers Festival, which was scheduled to take place from mid-February to the end of February, has been postponed until Easter.

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The organizers of the buskers festival, Strut and Fret, said in a statement that they had postponed their date to the April school holidays due to “persistent ambiguity over restrictions on events, especially those not are not labeled and open to the whole community “.

The buskers festival normally lasts two weeks. Last year, Strut and Fret, an Australian company, ran it only with Kiwi artists and no international groups.

According to the new traffic light system, “Green” and “Orange” do not impose any capacity limits on gatherings, but everyone present must present a vaccination certificate as proof of vaccination.

“The postponement will be a disappointment for the Cantabrians who have had the event on their summer calendar for 27 years,” the statement said.

“But it is positive that the event continues into 2022, bringing fun and excitement across the city of Ōtautahi Christchurch.”

Strut and Fret, along with the ChristchurchNZ City Economic Promotion and Development Agency, “would remain in close contact with the government and relevant health authorities as the situation progressed to ensure that the event could be held successfully. and in complete safety “.

The Arts Center in Christchurch during the World Buskers Festival last summer.

Inez Grim / Stuff

The Arts Center in Christchurch during the World Buskers Festival last summer.

Christchurch events that were canceled earlier this year include the Downtown Santa Parade, Christmas Concert in the Park, South Island’s First Moon Festival, Port Hills Crater Rim Ultra Race , the Diwali Festival, the Christchurch Schools’ Music Festival, the Hororata Highland Games and the SailGP World Yachting Regatta.

The Canterbury Agricultural Show was canceled this month and the Cup and Show Week horse races went without crowds.

City Council Events and Arts Manager Lucy Blackmore said the government’s lack of information on Covid restrictions led to their summer program being canceled.

Action at Kite Day on New Brighton Beach in 2020.

Iain McGregor / Stuff

Action at Kite Day on New Brighton Beach in 2020.

“We were hoping the Hagley Park party would still go on, but continuing to plan for the community-wide free event has become too difficult in today’s environment.”

The cancellation of Kite Day was due to challenges of hosting a confined beach event, Blackmore said.

“While the cancellations are disappointing, we have always known this is a possibility in the current environment and have contingency plans in place for the remainder of our summer program.

THING

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces Cabinet plans to move the rest of the country into the traffic light system at the same time as Auckland.

“The key to all of this is getting more information from the government on how the Covid protection framework works, which is expected at the end of the month,” she said.

“We need this detail to make sure the events we organize are fun, safe and profitable. We will announce the new program as soon as possible. ”

The government is due to decide on November 29 when the country can switch from current alert levels to the new traffic light system.

The new system will use vaccine passes to ease Covid restrictions for events and festivals as well as other public places.


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