In this Sept. 28, 2019, file photo, Old Town High School's marching band marches past the burned-out buildings from a downtown fire during the annual Old Town Riverfest parade. Credit: Emily Burnham / BDN

Old Town’s Riverfest has been canceled for the second year in a row due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Citing the uncertainty of safely holding large events, the city decided to not hold its Riverfest celebration and will not hold events related to Maine’s bicentennial celebration that were postponed from last year because of COVID-19, E.J. Roach, Old Town’s economic development director, said Friday.

The city’s Riverfest is an annual celebration that draws thousands of people from the surrounding area. It usually features a fireworks display, a parade, vendors and other community events in late September.

Last year, the city canceled the celebration in June but was looking to host it again this year.

The festival was last held in 2019, just a week after a devastating fire ripped through the heart of downtown, destroying several buildings and displacing 11 people.

Old Town was also slated to host events related to Maine’s 200th anniversary this September, but those too have been canceled, Roach said.

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Sawyer Loftus

Sawyer Loftus is a reporter covering Old Town, Orono and the surrounding areas. A recent graduate of the University of Vermont, Sawyer grew up in Vermont where he's worked for Vermont Public Radio, The...