Calgary Stampede ‘Possible’ With Vaccines Rollout, Kenney Says

The Calgary Stampede can probably go ahead this year as Alberta’s vaccination campaign accelerates, the Canadian province’s premier said.

The yearly festival that draws thousands of visitors was canceled due to the pandemic last year, but it “will be possible” in 2021, albeit with public heath precautions, Jason Kenney said in a webcast press conference.

The province that holds the world’s third-largest crude oil reserves in its oil sands is ramping up vaccinations and aims to have two thirds of the population protected from Covid-19 by the end of June, just in time for the festival and rodeo that’s normally held each July.

In 2013, following a flood that devastated downtown Calgary in one of Canada’s worst natural disasters in modern history, the Stampede was held just two weeks later, thanks largely to the work of volunteers.

New restrictions imposed on social gatherings last week amid a surge of recent cases of Covid-19 variants could be relaxed by month’s end as a quarter of a million vaccine doses are expected to arrive in the province in the coming week, Kenney said.

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