St. John Valley

2020 Acadian Festival canceled

MADAWASKA, Maine — The town of Madawaska and the St. John Valley Chamber of Commerce decided to cancel the Acadian Festival for the 2020 season.

The Board of Selectmen discussed during its May 4 meeting the town-sponsored events and activities for 2020 as they related to Gov. Janet Mills’ timeline for reopening the state.

From June 1 to Aug. 31, outdoor events and crowds on town property is still limited to no more than 50 people, which affects community activities such as parades, music events and festivals.

This would include the Acadian Festival.

The board voted to call off the Acadian Festival for 2020, but may reassess the situation in the late summer to see if another type of event would be possible.

The St. John Valley Chamber of Commerce and Tourism met with the Madawaska Acadian Festival Committee via video conference where they also decided on May 6 to cancel the Acadian Festival on their part.

“Taking into consideration the Guidelines established by Gov. Janet Mills for re-opening the state, the participants felt that based on the stage 3 guidelines [no more than 50 people gathering and a 14-day quarantine for visitors to the state for July and August] and for the safety of all concerned, it was best to cancel the event for this year,” the groups said.

“Though the guidelines may be changed to allow more lifting of restrictions by the month of August, the uncertainty of the situation helped the group make their decision.”

While the festival is canceled this year, the chamber hinted at possibly doing something to commemorate the occasion.

“As time progresses and we envision a lifting of some of the restrictions, we may hold some small celebration on Aug. 15 and it will be announced,” the groups said.

The Acadian Festival Committee announced the dates of next year’s Acadian Festival to be Aug. 13-15, 2021.

“We are looking forward to a great 2021 Acadian Festival,” the groups said.

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