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Many fall events, festivals canceled due to COVID-19; others still planned

Similar to popular summer events in Western New York, many fall events have been canceled due to COVID-19. But there are still some events that will go on.

CLARENCE, N.Y. — While the calendar says otherwise, the temperatures tell us it’s time for fall.

Due to the coronavirus, a number of very popular events and attractions have been canceled this year, but others are still on.   

In Clarence, the Great Pumpkin Farm will celebrate its 25th year. But this has been a year unlike any other and there will be numerous health and safety restrictions due to COVID-19. 

The Great Pumpkin Farm runs from Saturday through November 1. Masks are required at all times, except for those 2 years old and younger. Only members of the group you are with can sit at picnic tables, and when you’re eating and drinking at your table you can take off your mask.

You will be asked to follow social distancing guidelines.

If you refuse to wear a mask when you’re supposed to, you will be asked to leave. People who order alcohol are required to order food with it. And of course, if you think you may’ve been exposed to the coronavirus, you’re asked to stay home. There will be hand sanitizer stations throughout the farm. 

In Wheatfield, the organizers of WNY’s Original Cornfield Maze, which is a very popular attraction, made the very difficult decision of canceling for the year due to the coronavirus. Joining a long list of events that won’t happen.

Organizers said on the corn maze's official website that they look forward to seeing families next year for its 20th anniversary. 

Also canceling this year, the Ellicottville Fall Festival, which was supposed to happen next month. Oktoberfest on Old Falls Street in Niagara Falls has also been canceled. Many of these events take months, possibly over a year, to put together. 

According to Destination Niagara USA it has been a very frustrating year full of uncertainty. 

“They do take such great resources both physically and monetarily to prepare for and to pull off and such great enhancement not only to the communities that they serve but also to our visiting public,” said John Percy, the president and CEO of Destination Niagara USA.

There are a number of fall events that are still taking place such as Locktoberfest, the Cambria Corn Maze, Resurgence Brewing Oktoberfest, Celebrate Halloween at the Buffalo Zoo and Canalside events such as Fitness at Canalside, boat tours and cruises and kayak rentals.

Here are some events that have been cancelled this year: WNY's Original Cornfield Maze, the Ellicottville Fall Festival, Oktoberfest on Old Falls Street in Niagara Falls, and traditional fall activities at Canalside.