Pleasanton city officials pulled the plug on the 2020 Hometown Holiday Parade on Tuesday, canceling the annual December event due to the pandemic shelter order.
The "difficult decision" was reached by city leaders and members of the Hometown Holiday Parade Committee in light of the Alameda County Public Health Department's shelter-in-place restrictions prohibiting large group gatherings during the COVID-19 crisis, according to city spokeswoman Cindy Chin.
A televised tree-lighting ceremony is in the works to broadcast on Dec. 5, the original parade date.
"The annual holiday parade and tree lighting is a treasured Pleasanton tradition," Pleasanton City Manager Nelson Fialho told the Weekly.
"Unfortunately, the county health order still prohibits city-sponsored public events of this size. With over 5,000 spectators and parade entrants participating annually, it's just not possible for the city to host a gathering of this size," he added. "From the onset of COVID-19, the city's priorities have been and will continue to honor the county and state health directives, public safety, and the health and welfare of our community."
This marks the second year in a row without a holiday parade for Pleasanton. City officials canceled the 2019 procession due to inclement weather that weekend, though a public tree-lighting ceremony took place days later.
"While holiday parade will not proceed this year as planned, we encourage residents to join us virtually for the tree-lighting celebration in December," Fialho said Tuesday. "More importantly, the city looks forward to resuming the parade in 2021."
More details about the forthcoming tree-lighting TV special will be shared at www.hometownholiday.com soon, according to Chin.