Garden Grove

2020 Strawberry Festival is cancelled

THE ANNUAL Strawberry Festival planned for May 22-25 in Garden Grove has been cancelled due to the coronavirus (File photo).

What would have been the 62nd annual Strawberry Festival in Garden Grove has been cancelled due to the impact of the coronavirus.

On Tuesday, the Strawberry Festival Association’s board of directors met and voted to not hold the four-day Memorial Day weekend event, scheduled this year for May 22-25.

“It is our social responsibility and duty to comply with the recommendations of the Center For Disease Control and our elected officials to prevent the spread of the coronavirus,” said Association President Christine Ball. Also cancelled is the Strawberry Stomp 5K, which had been scheduled for May 23.

The cancellation affects not only the 250,000 people who annually attend the festival and parade, but also the non-profit organizations that depend on the Strawberry Festival to raise funds for their activities. The festival association also donates proceeds to civic organizations and agencies.

Greg Louganis, the winner of four Olympic gold medals in swimming, was scheduled to be the parade’s celebrity grand marshal. The theme of this year’s event was “Celebrating the Olympics.”

The cancellation come after Orange County Health Officer Dr. Nicole Quick and the Orange County Board of Supervisors banned all public gatherings through March 31, with the proviso that the restrictions could be extended for additional months.

In 1958, when Garden Grove was still turning from an agricultural town into a suburban city, the first festival was launched to celebrate the community’s signature crop – strawberries.

The one-day event evolved into a four-day celebration now centered on the Village Green park in the downtown area of the city.

Garden Grove is not the only community to have its festival affected. A similar event in Poteet, Texas, has been postponed until the fall, according to the San Antonio Express-News.

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