Despite all the positive COVID-19 related news in the last week regarding a return to some kind of 'normalcy' when it comes to the vaccinated going maskless and regaining social freedoms, one announcement on Tuesday reminded us we're still in a pandemic. Albeit the tail end of one, we hope.

The City of Utica's Independence Day Parade and fireworks celebration are canceled this summer despite all the aforementioned good news. Needless to say, anytime these summertime, celebratory staples of a community are disrupted, it's a disappointment.

That disappointment and frustration could clearly be seen on the WIBX 950 Facebook page Tuesday as we shared the news.

Among the comments:

  • WHY??
  • Doesn't make any sense. They open everything but Utica.
  • Don't blame covid blame the city.
  • Stupidity.
  • OMG stop canceling everything. Time to get back to living!!!

There were several others in a similar vein, along with comments noting that the New York State Fair will be up and running this summer, at least partially. That's a bigger event that draws more people, so why is that okay, but gatherings in Utica are being called off.

The explanation from Mayor Robert Palmieri including this quote: “We were hoping to host a parade and fireworks as in years past and waited as long as we could before making a final determination. We are certainly disappointed as this was a very difficult decision, but the health, well-being and safety of our residents is the most important priority,” said Palmieri.

The mayor said the City is planning a return of the parade and fireworks to celebrate the Fourth of July in 2022.

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