For the first time in 91 years, the Holland Tulip Time Festival will not take place.  Previously scheduled for May 2-10, 2020, organizers have called off the festival amid concerns about the novel coronavirus Covid-19.

Gwen Auwerda, Executive Director of the Tulip Time Festival, said in a statement,

It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we share this news. Our team has spent the last 11 months planning our 91st celebration and we are heartbroken not to see our work come into fruition.

 

Most of our volunteer base and 45% of our festival guests represent populations most vulnerable to infection. We also cannot ignore the two large and beloved retirement homes located right in the center of festival activity in downtown Holland.

 

This was not a decision taken lightly. We understand the huge financial impact the festival brings not only to our organization, but to small businesses, hotels and local attractions every year.

 

Ultimately, our concern for the safety of our community and guests outweighed concerns for our own organization.We are incredibly grateful to our community partners who have made the decision to stay with us during this time.”

Tulip Time organizers say the festival brings in 500,000 attendees and has a 48 million dollar economic impact on the Holland community.

Wood TV 8 reports that Tulip Time is offering refunds to those who have purchased tickets, however they are asking the public to consider those funds, making it possible for the festival to return in 2021.

Stay up-to-date on the most current information about the coronavirus pandemic and its effects in West Michigan here.