May 12 was a defeating day for Utahns, and especially Cedar City locals, with the announcement of the cancellation of both the Utah Shakespeare Festival and the Utah Summer Games.
Both events were canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made it both unsafe and unwise for guests and participants to attend.
After revising the starting date of the season on April 13, the Utah Shakespeare Festival did everything in its power to ensure a safe and enjoyable 59th season, as they planned to present five shows and The Greenshow.
Unfortunately, too many issues stood in the way of producing a health-conscious season.
“We know this news is difficult for the many individuals and small businesses in Cedar City who add so much to the Festival experience. They are our most important partners and we look forward to next summer when the streets, restaurants, shops and hotels of Cedar City are full of theatre-goers once again,” Southern Utah University President Scott L. Wyatt said.
In addition, the annual Utah Summer Games hosted by Larry H. Miller has also been canceled. Due to the restriction of gatherings of more than 20 people, the Games are nearly impossible to hold.
The Games has been hosted in Cedar City, Utah since 1986 and typically attracts more than 30,000 visitors.
“Cedar City is the most beautiful place to be in the summer and the community is so inviting. Our residents and local businesses help make the Utah Summer Games such an enjoyable experience for everyone involved,” President Wyatt said.
For patrons who have already purchased tickets to the Festival or athletes who have registered for the Games, full refunds will be issued.
Both organizations plan to host successful and safe events next year, especially for the Festival celebrating its 60th anniversary season.
Hopeful about the future, the Festival’s executive producer Frank Mack said, “There will be better days ahead, and the Utah Shakespeare Festival will once again be a source of joy, imagination and insights into the human condition. I’m heartbroken we can’t do that this season, but am enthused by the prospect of our 60th anniversary next year.”
Story by: Amanda Walton
Photo courtesy of bard.org