With COVID-19 restrictions easing, Elk Grove City Council to consider resumption of summertime events

One of the many effects of the COVID-19 pandemic closures has been the suspension of gatherings and public events. Over the last year in Elk Grove, dozens of annual events were canceled.

When the Elk Grove City Council meets on Wednesday, April 28, they will hear a staff report and consider restarting many of the events tentatively scheduled for this summer. The move comes as Gov. Gavin Newsom set a June 15 target date of easing many restrictions now in place based on several measurements.

According to the staff report, events typically scheduled in May, such as the public works department's Big Truck Day and the youth commission's Party on the Palms, will be held but based on current restrictions. The Big Truck event will be held on a drive-thru basis while alternate plans are being developed for the Party on the Palms. 

Two significant summer events, however, could be conducted on a modified basis if the June 15 targets are met. Those events are the Fourth of July fireworks display known as the Salute to the Red, White, and Blue and the late-August Multicultural Festival.

Among the options for the Red, White, and Blue, the city council could decide to hold it as an evening event versus previous celebrations, which were all-day events. Another option developed before Newsom set the June 15 target would encourage people to decorate yards and create a citywide celebration and contests that would help "foster[ing] patriotism throughout the City." 

As for the Multicultural Festival, there will be two options presented. The first would be to have the festival at District56, where people will be encouraged to wear masks and socially distance, and the second option would de-centralize the festival and have elements celebrated at weekly gatherings in August like the NeighborGood Market.   

The more traditional Red, White, and Blue event could cost about $100,000. The citywide celebration would cost about $22,000 and would allow police resources to be used for firework enforcement instead of traffic and crowd control for a fireworks display.

The traditional Multicultural Festival is budgeted for $63,000, while the decentralized events would cost about $44,000. The city council meets this Wednesday online at 6 p.m. 

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