Downtown arts festival canceled amid rising virus cases

Performers at the 2018 PVDFest. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence’s downtown arts festival has been canceled for the second year in a row amid rising cases of COVID-19.

PVDFest was scheduled to make its comeback Sept. 25 and 26, but officials said it would be unsafe to continue amid high levels of coronavirus transmission.

Mayor Jorge Elorza said the decision was made “after carefully considering the increased spread of the delta variant.”

The annual festival typically draws more than 100,000 people to downtown Providence.

Smaller outdoor art programs affiliated with the festival will continue in the coming weeks.

Officials said face masks will be strongly recommended.