We understand that this is disappointing news. Albany Parks & Recreation’s mission statement is, “We promote healthy living through recreational experiences and serve as stewards of Albany’s public parks and facilities.” We try hard to provide fun experiences to the Albany community, but maintaining health and safety for those who attend our events is also very important.
This is a decision that we did not make alone. Over the past few weeks, many of our sponsors, vendors, and volunteers have expressed concern over holding a large event in an environment where cases are rising, vaccination rates are low, and mask-wearing, mandated or not, is so contentious. Some of our partners have already chosen to pull out of this year’s event.
Albany Parks & Recreation does not have the staffing to enforce this new outdoor mask mandate. It is a task that we do not have the training for. We will not put our staff, volunteers, or vendors in difficult situations with attendees that are unwilling to wear masks.
Our staff worked hard at putting this event together and we are devastated by this outcome. We appreciate your positive comments of support for all those who worked hard to try and bring this year’s event back to the Albany community. We hope that you can join us August 26-27, 2022.