LAKE GEORGE — For the second consecutive year, the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival has been canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Festival organizers on Tuesday announced that the event, which was scheduled to take place June 26 and 27 at Charles R. Wood Festival Commons, has been pushed back to June 2022 due to state restrictions on large events.
Under current state guidelines, outdoor venues that can accommodate at least 2,500 people can host events at 20% capacity.
The guidelines would allow less than 1,000 attendees each day, the fewest guests the festival would have seen since its inaugural year in 2014, according the a news release announcing the cancellation.
Sasha Pardy, the event’s organizer, said the capacity limit, coupled with other safety protocols, would not only increase expenses for vendors, but would “severely change the flow and feel of the event” that typically brings thousands into the village.
“We would rather wait for the COVID-19 situation to improve than put on an event that cannot meet the expectations of our attendees, vendors and the community,” she said in a statement.
Festival organizers are now focusing their efforts on next year’s event, which is scheduled to take place on June 25 and 26.
Organizers are also continuing their fundraising efforts for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Southern Adirondacks, which typically receives a portion of ticket sale proceeds. Those who wish to donate to the organization can still do so by visiting adkwinefest.com/bbbs.
Last year’s installment of the festival, which aims to showcase wineries, breweries and artisan food vendors throughout the state, was scheduled to take place in April, but was rescheduled for September before eventually being canceled in August.
The festival was just one of a number of marquee events scheduled to take place in the village last year that was forced to cancel because of the pandemic.
Americade, the touring motorcycle rally, and the Adirondack Nationals Car Show, two of them most popular events in Lake George, were among those that canceled.
Both events are scheduled to return this year, though Americade, typically the first large event to take place in the village each June, has been pushed back to the end of September.
Gina Mintzer, executive director of the Lake George Regional Chamber of Commerce, said it was disappointing that the wine and food festival will not be taking place this year, but agreed it was the right decision given the current restrictions and concerns about the virus.
She added that supporting the vendors at the event is crucial and directed people to the Adirondack Craft Beverage Trail, which highlights local wineries, breweries and distilleries. For information on the trail, visit: adkcraftbev.com.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and economy. It is more important than ever to support them,” Mintzer said in a statement.
Chad Arnold is a reporter for The Post-Star covering the city of Glens Falls and the town and village of Lake George and Washington County government. Follow him on Twitter @ChadGArnold.