2020 St. Patrick's Parade in South Boston canceled amid coronavirus concerns
The 2020 St. Patrick's Day Parade in South Boston scheduled for Sunday has been canceled amid the coronavirus outbreak.
In a statement, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh said the decision was being made "out of an abundance of caution to ensure that we are doing what is needed to keep the residents of Boston safe and healthy."
The decision was made in collaboration with Congressman Stephen Lynch, Councilors Michael Flaherty and Ed Flynn, Senator Collins, Representative David Biele and David Falvey from the South Boston Allied War Veterans Council.
Walsh said while the risk in Boston remains low, the situation is changing very quickly. "Our top priority is preventing any new cases, to the best of our ability, and we are paying close attention to guidance from public health officials," the mayor said in the statement.
"We encourage all residents to follow preventive measures to avoid illness, such as washing hands and staying home if you are feeling sick, and we will continue to make public any information as this situation develops in Boston," he added.
The annual St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast has also been canceled.
"In the past, on a day with good weather we have seen crowds of over a million people converge on our neighborhood to celebrate the feast of St Patrick. Couple that with the huge number of house parties - it would have put a lot of people at risk of exposure," Mass. Rep. Stephen Lynch said. "This step was taken as a necessary precaution to limit risk to the general public, and I am grateful to all of our excellent public health officials who have offered their assistance."
The parade normally begins at the Broadway MBTA Station and ends at Andrew Square in South Boston.