Dublin, Ireland will not host its usual St. Patrick’s Day parade this year as concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus continue to weigh on people’s minds.
The move comes on the heels of a similar announcement by officials in Cork, which hosts the country’s second largest gathering.
Last year, an estimated 2 million people attended St. Patrick’s celebrations in the country. This year, the Republic of Ireland has already diagnosed 21 cases of COVID-19 and officials worry the count could go higher, especially during high-profile events like the parades.
Two of the biggest parades in the U.S., however, are still moving forward as planned. Boston and New York still plan to host their events, despite confirmed cases of coronavirus in both cities. Officials in Boston say they are “carefully monitoring” developments.
As on Monday midday, 28 people were confirmed infected in Massachusetts, though only one is in Boston. And 16 people in New York City are confirmed to have the virus.
Both of the two U.S. events draw huge crowds. Last year, more than 1 million people attended the Boston parade. The New York parade drew roughly 2 million spectators.
And people are starting to ask why the cities haven’t followed Ireland’s lead.
Dublin and Cork have canceled their St. Patrick's Day parades.
Wouldn't it make sense for Chicago, Boston, and other US cities do the same?
— Matthew Borus (@MatthewBorus) March 9, 2020
My favorite thing about all this coronavirus hysteria in Boston is that the St. Patrick's Day parade is still on for this weekend so like, way to pick and choose your battles I guess.
— Robbie Russell (@vApathyv) March 9, 2020
The planners of various St. Patrick's Day parades (looking at you New York and Boston) should read about Philadelphia in 1918.
— Tom Hearden (@followtheh) March 9, 2020
Have they cancelled the NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade yet?
— John Carney (@carney) March 9, 2020
Both parades are set to take place this Sunday.
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