Park City 2021 event calendar shows return of arts fest, Tour of Utah and others
The spread of the novel coronavirus and the subsequent health restrictions nearly erased Park City’s slate of special events in 2020.
One by one, the cancellations mounted through the spring and into the summer and fall. At the start of 2021, though, City Hall is preparing for the return of numerous events, something that could help reignite Park City’s tourism-heavy economy and re-create some of the energy that was lacking in 2020.
The municipal government has crafted a tentative calendar running through the end of 2021 that details the return of special events. Although the Sundance Film Festival, which is Park City’s largest special event, will not be held as a live event in 2021, the calendar indicates many others plan to be staged in the city as of now.
The calendar will depend on the status of the sickness as the events approach, and City Hall acknowledges officials will closely monitor the state of the coronavirus as it readies for the events. The Summit County Health Department is also heavily involved in discussions about events. There is hope at City Hall of improvements in the coronavirus numbers as more people are vaccinated in the months leading into the summer.
There had not been major new events added to the calendar by early in the year. Jenny Diersen, who is the economic development program manager at City Hall, said organizers of unspecified events that would be new to the calendar have made inquiries. She called the calendar published by the municipal government a “planning tool” as she described the long-range nature of organizing events.
A string of important events has secured dates in 2021, the calendar shows. They include the Independence Day celebration, the Triple Crown Sports Baseball World Series, the Tour of Utah bicycling race, the Park City Kimball Arts Festival and the Miners Day celebration. Each of the events was canceled in 2020.
Some of the other key dates on the tentative calendar for 2021, which begins in earnest in June, include:
• the weekly Park City Farmer’s Market starting June 2.
• a lacrosse tournament known as the Ski Town Shoot Out on June 4 and June 5.
• a Beethoven festival in July and early August
• Autumn Aloft from Sept. 17 until Sept. 19
City Hall staffers anticipate providing an update to Mayor Andy Beerman and the Park City Council in February or March. It is likely the discussion will focus on the planning efforts as the organizers of the special events ready for the summer and fall with the spread of the sickness expected to continue to influence the event blueprints.
The special events have long been seen as crucial to the tourism industry in the summer and fall, attracting arts and culture lovers as well as sports crowds. The lodging and restaurant industries especially benefit from the special events in the summer and fall, with other sectors like retail and transportation also seeing business from people attending the events.
There has been talk in recent months, though, about whether the summer and fall special events are as critical to the economy as once believed after Park City drew crowds during those times of year in 2020 even after the cancellations and amid the spread of the sickness. Visitors instead appeared to have been drawn to activities like hiking and bicycling as an escape from larger cities. The pedestrian days on Main Street in 2020, introduced in response to the concerns about the coronavirus, were also widely deemed to be a success.
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