Washington Good Neighbor Days festival switches to a new approach with several summer events

Local News

WASHINGTON, Ill. (WMBD — As central Illinois communities reveal their plans for festivals, one town is sitting out.

The Washington Chamber of Commerce Director, Chevie Kriete, announced Tuesday, April 20, that the Washington Good Neighbor Days Festival is taking a new approach this year.

“With the current guidelines in place and the steps that we’d need to get through in order to have a festival, [it] just doesn’t seem realistic in the next six weeks when the festival would normally happen,” said Kriete.

Instead of a typical festival, the chamber is planning multiple events throughout the summer she said.

Kriete said the turnout for events will be smaller and allow more people to spread out, while a typical festival draws in thousands.

“The festival usually brings about 10,000 people over those five days that we have, but individual events are usually no more than 200-500 people, depending on the event. So, we’re looking at a lot smaller scale of people getting together,” said Kriete.

She said there are too many unknowns with the COVID-19 pandemic to host the normal festival safely.

“I think if we were something that was happening after the Fourth of July, our answer might be different too. But we’re looking at something for the end of May and there’s just too many variables that are in place,” said Kriete.

She said the first Good Neighbor Days Summer event is at a Five Points Friday event in May. She also said other events are in the works and will be revealed in the coming weeks.

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