CANCELLED - Morganton Festival Weekends

ONLY Friday, Aug. 27, 2021 events to be held, remainder of festival weekends cancelled

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When the Morganton Festival Weekends were planned for 2021, it was done with preparations and measures made for a smaller-scaled event, as well as hopes that COVID-19 would be under control and Burke County citizens would be willing to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Unfortunately, the Delta variant of COVID-19 has continued to spread rapidly and area hospitals are either completely full or are rapidly filling up.

Historic Morganton Festival, Inc., has made the decision to cancel all but one night of the Morganton Festival Weekends out of an abundance of caution and deep concern for the health and safety of our citizens.

Historic Morganton Festival, Inc., will still have the planned food vendors opening at 12pm and the concert featuring Carolina Soul Band on Friday, August 27, from 7-9pm with safety measures in place. Nothing else scheduled for the remainder of the Morganton Festival Weekends will go on as planned.

There will be NO festival activities held Saturday, August 28, or the weekends of September 3 and 4, 2021, or September 10 and 11, 2021. This means the Sunrise Run, roving entertainment, craft vendor days and other Friday night concerts planned for the Morganton Festival Weekends have all been cancelled. Historic Morganton Festival, Inc., hopes to still hold the M.A.D.E. Competition on Sept. 10 and 11, but at a different location where social distancing measures can be easily observed.

“We deeply regret needing to cancel nearly all of our planned activities for the Morganton Festival Weekends,” said HMF, Inc., Director Sharon Jablonski. “Unfortunately, most of Burke County’s population is still unvaccinated, despite the vaccine against COVID-19 being readily available to anyone over 12 who wants it. We were looking forward to holding this year’s downscaled, smaller event, but due to the high contagion-rate of the Delta variant, combined with our county’s very low vaccination rate, this is the right decision to protect our citizens’ health. We could not in good conscience hold a potential super-spreader event that would cause our area hospitals to be put under even more strain than they already are.”

Anyone attending the concert this Friday night will be asked to wear a mask and practice social distancing measures. The stage for the concert will be on South Sterling Street, and food and beverage vendors will be set up on East Meeting Street. Food vendors open at 12pm, and beverage vendors open at 6pm.

“We are pleading with our citizens to be responsible if they attend the Friday night concert. While outdoor events are safer, we still need people to wear a mask and observe social distancing measures,” Jablonski said. “While none of us wanted to cancel this year’s festival weekends, doing so is the safest option for the health and safety of all of our citizens.”​

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