Bel Air’s July 4th parade and fireworks canceled due to COVID-19

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The Bel Air Independence Day Committee has canceled its Independence Day parade and fireworks for only the second time in 30 years as a result of COVID-19. Here are the details provided:

Local Harford County High School bands are a major part of the Bel Air July 4th Parade. Here, the Havre de Grace High School Marching Warriors Band perform in the 2015 Independence Day parade.

Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc., Announces Cancellation of July 4, 2020 Festivities

Bel Air, Md. (May 13, 2020) – The Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc., today announced the cancellation of all planned festivities in Bel Air on July 4, 2020, including the Independence Day parade and fireworks display, in an effort to protect public health and abide by state and federal restrictions on large gatherings.

“For decades, our committee has prided itself on carrying on Bel Air’s Independence Day traditions without fail,” said Committee President Donald Stewart. “We have held events in inclement weather of all types–in fact, this is only the second time in more than 30 years that we have cancelled the parade and fireworks. However, after consulting with local officials, and evaluating tentative state and federal timeframes for the restoration of large gatherings and public events, we have determined that this year’s celebrations cannot occur as planned.”

Each year, the all-volunteer Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc. begins organizing and planning the day-long festivities months in advance of July 4, including the securing of contracts, coverage, and agreements with deadlines well before the day of the event. “Given the still-uncertain process of recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the necessary planning and organization process cannot move forward,” states Parade Chairman and Committee Vice-President Michael Blum.

The committee previously canceled the July 4, 1989 parade and fireworks due to a tropical storm event; the fireworks display took place several days later.

The current Miss Bel Air Independence Day title-holder, Chiamaka Ezeonyebuchi, will retain that title through 2021, and will compete in the Miss Maryland pageant, which has been rescheduled for June 20-27, 2021. Her successor to the title will be chosen in early 2022.

For more information about the Bel Air Independence Day Committee and about July 4 in Bel Air, please visit http://belairjuly4.org