Community leaders announced in an Aug. 14 news release from the Thomson-McDuffie Chamber of Commerce that the 2020 Camellia City Festival and McDuffie County’s 150th Anniversary celebration would be postponed until fall 2021.

The combined annual festival and anniversary launch had been scheduled for Oct. 24. The 2020 Paceline Bicycle Ride fundraising event, which was to be held in conjunction with the local celebration, will be held virtually through the PaceDay 2020 Unchained Virtual Challenge.

Event organizers stated that with the steady increase in COVID-19 cases in the county and across the state, they decided a postponement would be the most prudent way to proceed during a public health crisis.  

Organizers stated it would be difficult to manage social distancing and other safety protocols for a celebration that would be expected to draw large crowds.

“While this is not the outcome we hoped for, we have a mission to protect the quality of life in McDuffie County and we feel this decision is in the best interest of that mission,” said Ashley Morey, Thomson-McDuffie Chamber of Commerce Board Chair. “We look forward to finding innovative ways to celebrate this momentous birthday and the rich history of McDuffie County for the remainder of this year and planning an exciting festival in 2021.”

The chamber release stated as the festival would be held in October 2021, citizens would be celebrating the end of the county’s 150th Anniversary year. Activities are still being planned to take place throughout the year to commemorate McDuffie County’s Anniversary, they said.   

Chamber staff will contact registered vendors with refund information, according to the release.  

“We thank everyone who supported our efforts to host this event and look forward to coming together in October 2021,” stated event organizers.

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