By Jamie Wiggan
Across the region, longstanding events celebrating community and American independence have been canceled or altered as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19.
Moon, which typically hosts a large celebration at Moon Park, has abandoned its regular plans this year in favor of a firework display at Robert Morris University’s main campus.
Township officials debated the issue during recent public meetings and landed on a fireworks-only option as a compromise. The university campus on University Boulevard was chosen in an effort to make the fireworks visible to more residents from their homes.
“With this new central location, it is our hope that more Moon residents can enjoy the show,” according to a social media statement announcing the change. “No public parking will be available on the RMU campus. We encourage residents to stay home and enjoy the fireworks.”
The fireworks display will take place on July 4, beginning at 9.30 p.m.
Elsewhere events have been canceled outright or delayed indefinitely.
The annual Crafton Celebrates festival, a series of summer celebrations culminating in a large firework display, will not take place this summer.
A social media statement issued April 21 by the Crafton Celebrates committee indicated a final determination had then been made.
“There are months of planning, meetings, and especially fundraising leading up to these events that cannot be held at this time,” the statement said. “We appreciate everyone’s support and are always looking for new committee members to join us going forward.
Similarly, Ingram Days, a summer festival that last year celebrated its 40th anniversary, will not take place as planned this year, according to Sam Nucci, Ingram Council President.
Nucci said the event committee hopes to host a “scaled-down” version in the fall, but is taking a wait-and-see approach.
In Robinson, Manager Frank Piccolino confirmed the township’s Independence Day festivities, which usually take place at the Burkett Sport and Recreational Complex, have been canceled this year with no alternative plans currently in place.