MORRIS COUNTY — The Morris County Parade Committee, in a joint statement with the Town of Morristown Council and Mayor Timothy Dougherty, have announced the cancellation of the Morris County St. Patrick’s Day Parade, scheduled for Saturday, March 14.
The announcement comes amid heightened concern of community spread due to the coronavirus, COVID-19. The Parade Committee and Town view the cancellation as a necessary precaution to minimize the spread of the virus and protect the health of our residents and visitors.
“We are disappointed by the decision, but it was entirely necessary,” said the Committee in a joint statement. “We’ve been cautiously optimistic that the parade could still go forward, but as other towns and cities across the country take the difficult but necessary step to cancel their events, we must as well in Morris County.”
The decision was made in a joint effort with the Morris County Parade Committee, Mayor & Administration Office, Town Council, and County Health Department.
The Committee and Town are announcing, however, that a separate parade is in the works for late summer. The September event will be the halfway point to the 2021 parade festivities. More details on the event will come soon. “We also remind all residents and visitors in Morristown that even young people can be exposed to the virus and carry it home,” said the Mayor.
“We join Parade Committee and the Town Council in asking people to take precautions and heed the advice of the CDC as they celebrate this weekend.” The public should be particularly mindful of the CDC’s recent guidance for older adults and other high risk individuals to avoid large crowds or gatherings. “I am obviously upset by the decision to cancel the parade,” said Mayor Dougherty.
“But the most important thing we have to consider is safety. Above anything else, we must take the necessary steps to keep our residents and visitors safe. There will always be more parades.”
The Committee and Town would like to thank Stephanie L. Gorman, Assistant Health Officer and Dr. Carlos Perez, of the County of Morris Office of Health Management for their analysis, recommendations, and guidance; and Trish O’Keefe, President of Morristown Medical Center, and her staff who have been in constant contact with the Mayor’s Office and provided vital information and leadership regarding the virus.