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State's ban on gatherings over 250 people nixes annual Irish festival for health reasons

PMG: SHANNON WELLS - Beltaine at the St. Patricks Day party at Kells Irish Pub in downtown Portland in 2017. The 2020 Irish Festival has been scaled back because of the state ban on gatherings of over 250 to contain the spread of Coronavirus.

PMG - ST PATRICK'S DAY FALLS VICTIM TO CORONAVUS HEALTH MEASURES.

The 2020 Portland's Kells Irish Festival has been canceled due to public health mesaures around Coronavirus control.

On Thursday, March 12, the McAleese Family, which owns Kells pubs in Portland and Seattle, issued the following statement regarding the Kells Irish Festival:

"Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are complying with new state guidelines affecting large gatherings, and have canceled this year's Kells Irish Festival. We will not be offering any activities in our Festival Tent. This includes live music, family day, and The Smoker, which will be postponed until a future date. However, both Kells Irish Pub and Kells Brewery will be open regular hours for business as usual, and both pubs will celebrate St. Patrick's Day with live music and Irish dancers; a new schedule will be posted at KellsIrishFest.com. We will monitor the number of attendees in our pubs at any given time. While we are very disappointed that we are unable to hold our 29th annual event, we know this is the right decision for the health and safety of our guests and the community as a whole."

Kell's pub downtown has traditionally erected a tent in the lot behind its property for live music, which draws thousands of people over a long weekend.

In New York City, the annual St. Patrick's Day parade, which draws up to 2 million spectators and thousands of marchers from around the world, was postponed by the organizers for the first time since 1762.


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