Media Contact: Katie Adelman
Rochester Downtown Alliance
Direct: (507) 216-9886
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ROCHESTER, Minn.—Based on official state event guidance and in support of today’s City of Rochester announcement, the Rochester Downtown Alliance will cancel the 2020 in-person version of Thursdays Downtown as well as Movies in the Park in response to COVID-19.
“We know this is a great disappointment to the Rochester community. Thursdays Downtown is a highly anticipated social event and generates important revenue for many small businesses. However, in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic’s uncertainty, and in light of the public health risks inherent in gathering crowds, canceling Thursdays Downtown and similar large festivals is the responsible thing to do,” said Holly Masek, executive director of the Rochester Downtown Alliance.
“We are supportive of the City’s decision to suspend large public events through August 16. Everyone around us – from government officials, to businesses, to event planners, must make difficult decisions this year to keep our community safe and healthy. Thursdays Downtown will bring people together again when it is safe to do so, and we will be ready to celebrate with you then.”
While large events are not permissible at this time, the RDA is actively exploring ways to support downtown this summer, and will be launching virtual events, public space improvements, passive programs, and other initiatives in the coming weeks.
“Because our event exhibitors often rely on annual events for their livelihood, we’re excited to launch a virtual Thursdays Downtown artisan market with online entertainment and food and beverage vendor options by mid-June,” said Monika Kopet, RDA director of events and strategic partnerships.
As for Movies in the Park, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development addressed in the Stay Safe Plan outline the “potential for phased opening with capacity restrictions and social distancing requirements” regarding similar event models to RDA’s Movies in the Park. Given this uncertainty, RDA has opted to cancel the 2020 program, which typically takes place in June, July, and August.
For the remaining roster of events, the RDA staff will continue to monitor city, state, and national events and activities updates and recommendations. The RDA is prepared to adjust event plans as needed by the following decision dates:
With any questions related to being a Thursdays Downtown virtual exhibitor, contact Monika Kopet, RDA director of events and strategic partnership, at firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
Media inquiries and interview requests can be directed to Katie Adelman, RDA director of content and communications, at email@example.com.
About Thursdays Downtown
Thursdays Downtown combines arts, music, food and a vendor market into a weekly community-uniting, block-party-style event that is free to all attendees. In 2019, Thursdays Downtown grew into a large music and arts festival, drawing 222,000+ people throughout the season and approximately 115 unique vendors each week.
About Movies in the Park
Movies in the Park brings together family or friends for a free outdoor movie experience. Each month from June to August, the family-friendly Movies in the Park features a different flick, activities, and movie-inspired food and drink (available for purchase).
About the Rochester Downtown Alliance
The Rochester Downtown Alliance is a nonprofit corporation comprised of a broad range of people representing property owners, business leaders, the city and others with a direct stake in enhanced business and economic development conditions in the downtown district. We work together to build a vibrant downtown community. We believe a strong core positively impacts the greater city of Rochester. Through a series of special events, activities, and initiatives, we create energy, excitement, and a unique character to Downtown Rochester, Minnesota.