Philadelphia prohibiting large public events through February 2021

WPVI logo
Wednesday, July 15, 2020
Philadelphia prohibiting large public events through February 2021
The City of Philadelphia said on Tuesday that it will not allow any large public events through February 2021, and that includes parades.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The City of Philadelphia is prohibiting any large public events for the next several months as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Mayor Jim Kenney announced on Tuesday that the moratorium will be in effect through February 28, 2021.

Mayor Kenney announces moratorium on large public events in Philly through February 2021.

The city's order applies to special events or gatherings of 50 people or more on public property.

This means events such as festivals, parades, concerts, carnivals, fairs and flea markets will be prohibited in the city.

Kenney also said permits for residential block parties will not be accepted until further notice.

"A timeline for when such activities can resume will be communicated as soon as possible," Kenney said.

RELATED: Videos show large block party in Southwest Philadelphia despite COVID-19 guidelines

Videos show large block party in Southwest Philadelphia despite COVID-19.

The mayor said this was not an easy decision to make.

"The health and safety of Philadelphia residents, workers and visitors must be our top priority," Kenney said.

The prohibition does not apply to demonstrations and first amendment-related activites; private events that are not advertised such as family gatherings or weddings; recreational activities for youths and adults with fewer than 25 participants; and events and gatherings taking place on private property such as performance venues.

However, event producers and venue managers must follow applicable guidance from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Kenney said the moratorium would not apply to stadiums, but Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley clarified that having fans in stadiums would not meet the city's guidelines under the executive order.

Falrey said while he envisions a safely-played NFL season can happen, there won't be fans in the Linc on his watch.

"I can't say what the plans are for the league, but from a safety perspective they can play games but not have crowds," Farley said.

Action News reached out to the Philadelphia Eagles for comment, but we have not heard back.

The city's order means the big tailgates will have to wait.

Keith Dotegowski's Eagles bus, like so many others across the Delaware Valley, was ready to go. Now he's stunned.

"There's nothing. I have no emotion. I don't know what to do. I'm lost," he says.

We also caught up with Craig "Quimby" Chenosky, owner of the famous Green Legion tailgates.

He said, "It's not just about people that work for us. It's the mom and pop stores that are around South Philadelphia that are depending on that foot traffic in and out of games."


This moratorium will impact some major upcoming events in the city, such as the rescheduled Broad Street Run, the Philadelphia Marathon and the Mummers Parade.

Action News can report that this will also impact the 6abc/Dunkin' Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The City of Philadelphia will not permit any large public events for the next several months as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

6abc agrees with the city that the safety and well-being of the thousands of amazing people who make the parade a reality every year, and the wonderful crowds that have made it a point to be there in person, need to be the priority.

But while we may not have a parade marching up the Ben Franklin Parkway this year, 6abc is still looking forward to celebrating Thanksgiving morning with all of you.

We will be here, just like every year, kicking off the holiday season from 9 a.m. until noon. There will be music, fun and of course: Santa Claus.

Instead of being out on the Parkway though, you can join us from the comfort and safety of home.

Details will be coming over the weeks and months ahead.


Philadelphia TV station PHL17 said on Tuesday that it plans to bring Mummers content to viewers on New Year's Day 2021.

The station said a programming guide will be made available at a later date.

That content will be a mix of highlights from previous parades and new material.

"As the longtime broadcast home of the Philadelphia Mummers Parade, we will continue to produce and televise Mummers content to the passionate Mummers community of this great city as we strive to keep our residents, performers, and employees safe," said Vince Giannini, Vice President and General Manager of PHL17.


The impact of the order to shut down large public events will be felt in the hearts, and wallets, of many people.

Leo Dignam is an organizer for the Philadelphia Marathon and Broad Street Run. He said the economic impact on the city will be substantial.

"It's huge. I know just with the marathon alone, just with the marathon, the impact alone is $20 million," he said.

Rich Porco, the president of the Mummers Comics Division, says, "It's a big disappointment but we do have to understand the problem."

In Passyunk Square, hoagies are being prepared at Ricci's Hoagies. That's where a 100-year celebration of the family-owned business is now canceled or at least scaled back.

"We're pretty disappointed - 100 years for a family-owned business. We've owned it for 20, but we've been on this same corner for 100 years. So yeah we are disappointed," said owner Michael Pagliarella.