COVID forces cancellation of Scandinavian Folk Festival
The 2021 Scandanavian Folk Festival has been canceled by organizers.
The next festival is scheduled for July 2022. Continued COVID-19 restrictions for large group gatherings and required quarantine for international travelers have prompted the decision. Thirty-two guest performers from Sweden had agreed to be part of this year’s celebration but have had to cancel their plans.
Organizers said the festival is not like a theater which can control social distancing with assigned seats.
The Jamestown area is a major Swedish settlement and has a significant heritage to share. Swedes first arrived in the 1840s and by the 1920s, Jamestown had the highest percentage of Swedish born citizens of any city in the United States.
“A successful festival, that expects 3,000 people, cannot be planned overnight,” organizers said in a news release. “Several months of planning are needed to coordinate performers, volunteers, vendors, and site logistics. Unfortunately, decisions must be made at this time as compared to the last minute. “
Some Swedish-themed events may resume in the fall. The American Scandinavian Heritage Foundation has also decided to cancel its midsummer celebration in June.
The YouTube channel an Facebook page at “Scandinavian Jamestown” for videos of past Scandanavian Folk Festivals, folk dancing, music and lectures.