PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Pittsburgh’s Labor Day Parade is canceled.
The announcement was made Friday: the traditional Labor Day celebration won’t happen this year.
The Allegheny/Fayette County Labor Council canceled the parade, which usually draws around 200,000 people every year. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, social distancing would be impossible.
Darrin Kelly, the council president, says Pittsburgh has the “biggest and most extravagant” Labor Day parade in the country.
But this year, the council will hold a weekend of service instead, which will include cleaning local parks and trails as well as hosting food and blood drives.
Pittsburgh’s Labor Day parade also attracts a score of politicians looking for union support. It’s a favorite of former Vice President Joe Biden, who has marched in at least two of Pittsburgh’s Labor Day parades. With the presidential campaign in full gear, there’s a good chance he would have returned this year, where Pennsylvania is a must-win state.
For one politician who is always upfront in the parade, he’s had to make too many difficult announcements recently.
“We know that these last number of months, many great traditions have been forgone for this year — and hopefully only for this year,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.
“One of those great traditions of Western Pennsylvania is the Labor Day Parade. It signifies the end of summer, it signifies the beginning of kicking off the school year.”