WISCASSET — Wiscasset will not hold its annual Fourth of July parade and fireworks this year due to concerns over COVID-19.

Wiscasset Selectmen Tuesday, May 19, unanimously canceled the celebration because of Gov. Janet Mills’ state order against gatherings of more than 50 people is scheduled to still be in effect in July.

Selectmen also voted to move its annual town meeting and municipal election to Tuesday, Sept. 8 to prevent large groups of people from gathering.

“I hate to see it go because the townspeople put on one heck of a fourth of July,” said Benjamin Rines Jr., vice chairman of the Wiscasset Board of Selectmen. “We’re following the Governor’s guidelines. At the moment, it’s just out of the question.”

Rines estimated the parade and fireworks display draws about 1,000 people.

The money for the fireworks was kept in the town budget in the event the celebration can happen later in the year.

“Let’s look forward to next year’s parade,” said Rines. “Maybe it’ll be bigger and better than ever.”

This comes one week after Jon Jennings, Portland city manager, canceled the city’s Fourth of July fireworks celebration, which usually attracts thousands to the city’s Eastern Promenade, the Portland Press Herald reported.

Bath also canceled its annual Heritage Days festival, a five-day festival that occurs around the Fourth of July in downtown Bath. This would have been the 48th year of Bath Heritage Days.

The Yarmouth Chamber of Commerce canceled its annual Clam Festival. This would have been the 55th year of the Yarmouth Clam Festival, which is always held in July and attracts about 80,000 people over three days.

Citing the Maine CDC, The Portland Press Herald reported 1,819 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 73 deaths as of Wednesday. State health officials reported 78 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, the largest single-day spike to date in the state.

Related Headlines

Comments are not available on this story.