Chamber takes 1st steps to bring back Fourth of July parade this summer
The Steamboat Springs Chamber has taken the first step toward bringing a more traditional Fourth of July celebration back to town this summer.
“We don’t have an approved plan right now,” Chamber CEO Kara Stoller said. “I feel optimistic that the city will approve the permits, and we need to ensure that with any activities that we plan and organize that we can uphold the health and safety of all attendees, before we can commit to moving forward with them.”
Rachel Lundy, executive assistant and special event coordinator at the city of Steamboat Springs, confirmed she had received a request for a special event permit from the Chamber to host the Fourth of July Parade.
Requests from the Steamboat Springs Ski Town Lions Club to host the organization’s annual pancake breakfast and from Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club for the Jumpin’ and Jammin’ Ski Jumping Competition at Howelsen Hill Ski Area have also been submitted, according to Lundy. Those events would be added to the list of July Fourth weekend activities that already includes the Steamboat Pro Rodeo Series.
“I’m actually sending the request out tomorrow with a bunch of other applications for staff reviews,” Lundy said. “The staff review process is just getting started, and there’s a lot of other event safety planning that still needs to happen. I haven’t dug into the details too much.”
Lundy said the process to review any special events permit requests normally takes about two weeks.
“I’ll send it out this Friday, and our staff comments will be due June 4, and then we are also meeting with the event organizer along with our public safety crew, fire and the police department to talk about the communications plan and what the event safety plan would look like,” Lundy said.
She said the city still requires event producers to submit a COVID-19 mitigation plan with special events applications. The county has a plan form on its website, and organizers can fill out that form and submit it with their applications.
“We want to make sure that people are still thinking about COVID,” Lundy said. “Hopefully, our numbers don’t change, and we don’t go in a different direction. But we just want to make sure people are still thinking about those things, because we just don’t know what’s going to happen.”
While Stoller is optimistic the Fourth of July Parade permit will be approved, she said crowds watching floats roll down Lincoln Avenue is still not a given. She said the Chamber wanted to meet the deadline that requires that special use permits be submitted at least 45 days prior to the actual event.
“We wanted to be sure that the option was available,” Stoller said.
She added that events, like the parade where tickets are not required, come with their own set of challenges.
“Nonticketed events have different challenges than ticketed events, where people are seated and where you can have more control over the attendee flow,” Stoller said. “This takes additional planning and thought and work with the public health officials to ensure that we have plans set forth to keep everyone’s health and safety at the forefront.”
Her plans are to wait until the process has played out before making any big announcements.
“We’re not ready to dive into those details publicly just because we’re still working them out,” Stoller said. “We will keep you posted as soon as we know that we have the green light.”
John F. Russell is the business reporter at the Steamboat Pilot & Today. To reach him, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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