2020 Days Of ’47 Parade, Activities Canceled Due To Coronavirus Pandemic

Apr 28, 2020, 5:00 PM | Updated: 9:43 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – All “Days of ’47” Pioneer Day Celebration activities have been canceled for 2020  due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to a press release from organizers.

Days of ’47 Board of Trustees President Lane Summerhays said the decision was not taken lightly and was made after thorough consideration from all applicable sources.

Among the annual events that will not take place this year were the Days of ’47 Parade, Rodeo, Pioneers of Progress Dinner, Sunrise Service, Royalty Pageant and Pops Concert.

“It is a huge tradition,” said Greg James, Days of ’47 executive vice president. “We haven’t canceled the parade since the First and Second World Wars. This is the first time in a long time that this has even been a consideration.”

Board officials also said although conditions may change between now and July, a deadline had to be imposed and a decision made due to the considerable work that would need to be done before Pioneer Day.

“You’ve got float builders who have to build floats. You’ve got stakes who participate in building floats, bands that have to rehearse,” said James.

With so many people packed in for the fun, the board did not see any way it could make social distancing work without risking lives.

“It’s just not worth the risk of assembling all of those people right now, putting them at risk, and then putting a larger crowd at risk,” said James.

The parade is the largest in the state of Utah and was slated for 9 a.m. on July 24. The 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo were also scheduled to start that same day, until officials announced they would be postponed to 2021.

Longtime KSL TV anchor Deanie Wimmer grew up enjoying the Days of ’47 traditions and has hosted the parade for more than a decade.

“It has just been kind of the quintessential celebration of our state,” said Wimmer. “So it was disappointing. I understand the reasons, obviously, but it was just one of the rites of summer.”

KSL TV parade coverage is one of the most-watched TV programs in Utah every year. Wimmer said she especially appreciates the creativity, hard work and inclusiveness that goes into the parade.

“You see entries from different churches and different businesses,” she said. “You’ll have young people in marching bands, older people in vintage cars, horses…a nod to every one of our bits of history.”

Families were invited to “bring the kids, the sleeping bags and the hot dogs downtown” the night before the parade. Camping out to reserve a spot along the parade route has been a tradition among Utahns for years, although there would have been some restrictions.

The annual Deseret News Marathon, half marathon, 10k and 5k races also held on July 24, will also be canceled this year.

“Based on the coronavirus and the desire to keep runners and the public safe, we need to cancel the races this year,” said Mike Todd, CFO and associate publisher of the Deseret News and race organizer. “Our desire is to give the runners an option to get a refund of their entry fee or defer their entry fee to next year’s races.”

Those who signed up will receive an email this week informing them of what actions they need to take for a refund.

Organizers said they are now looking forward to 2021.

“We’ll do something special next year,” said James. “I don’t know what it will be, but we’ll do something fun.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Air Force Thunderbirds...
Merri Moeller, KSL TV

WATCH LIVE: Warriors Over The Wasatch 

After a four-year break, the Warriors Over the Wasatch Air and Space Show is back at Hill Air Force Base.
14 hours ago
FILE (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)...
Merri Moeller, KSL TV

Body found at Millcreek Walmart, police investigating

Unified Police Department said they were investigating Friday after a body was found at a Walmart.
14 hours ago
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) speaks during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hea...

‘Mitt Romney Republican’ is now a potent GOP primary attack

Mitt Romney isn't up for reelection this year. But Trump-aligned Republicans hostile toward the Utah senator have made his name a recurring theme in this year's primaries, using him as a foil and derisively branding their rivals “Mitt Romney Republicans."
14 hours ago
Bodycam footage from the Moab Police Department that shows them talking with Brian Laundrie is seen...
Jamiel Lynch and Chenelle Woody, CNN

Lawyer releases pages from Brian Laundrie’s notebook in which he admits to killing Gabby Petito

The attorney for the family of Brian Laundrie on Friday released eight pages from Laundrie's notebook that was found near his remains in Florida in October last year, according to a news release obtained by CNN affiliate WINK.
14 hours ago
Follow @KSL_AlexCabrero...
Alex Cabrero

Two members of USU Aviation program killed in plane crash

Two people died Friday morning in a small airplane crash in Cache County.
2 days ago
Chris Jensen and Chris Wharton have been married for six years....
Mike Anderson

LGBTQ+ community concerned Supreme Court could revisit same-sex marriage

An opinion filed by Justice Clarence Thomas has some people concerned over whether the Supreme Court could reconsider other past rulings, including same-sex marriage and contraception.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
2020 Days Of ’47 Parade, Activities Canceled Due To Coronavirus Pandemic