At Wednesday’s meeting, the City Commissioners approved granting permits for Springtime Tallahassee subject to its plans for COVID mitigation.
During the City Commission Retreat held in January, the commissioners directed staff to reinstate COVID-19 mitigation plans for spring special events in the area. These events, which would be co-sponsored by the City, must have approval by the commission in order to proceed. Community events like the Springtime Tallahassee festival have been prohibited in the city due to COVID-19 precautions since March 2020.
The Springtime Tallahassee Festival, which was founded in 1968, was created to support legislators that were in favor of keeping Florida’s state capitol in Tallahassee as opposed to moving the distinction to Orlando. Since then, the festival has become one of the top special events in the southeast, attracting over 20,000 visitors every year. It is estimated that out-town visitors spend upwards of $6 million, stimulating the local economy.
According to the meeting agenda, “Special event permit applications are now required to include COVID-19 mitigation plans.”
These plans are meant to demonstrate how the event organizer will follow CDC guidelines as well as federal, state and local regulations regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
During their Jan. 27 meeting, the City Commission approved four events to take place during the spring season: Word of South, Red Hills Horse Trials, LeMoyne Arts Festival and the Southern Shakespeare Festival. In order to be approved, Springtime Tallahassee is expected to submit its specific COVID-19 safety plan prior to the next City Commission meeting.