Tucson's Fourth Avenue Winter Street Fair has been canceled.
"This is another heartbreaking development that we have spent the last several weeks monitoring," said a news release Wednesday from the Fourth Avenue Merchants Association. "Based on all the reliable information related to our region and relying on our local health department professionals to determine the best course for the 2020 Fourth Avenue Winter Street Fair."
Pima County and Tucson officials had recently created a new special event permitting process for events with more than 50 people, as a state-wide order from Gov. Doug Ducey has banned gatherings of that size.
Health department officials have asked for permit applications to be submitted as least three weeks in advance to work so they can work with event organizers to ensure the best safety protocols will be in place.
In its release, the merchant's association said they opted to focus on the Spring Street Fair, scheduled for March 19-21, and that they "appreciate and support the leadership and guidance of the City of Tucson and the Pima County Health Department."
"We understand this is a major disappointment for the hundreds of artists and the
thousands of folks who look forward to this event," the release said. "While the Street Fair represents a significant portion of their annual income, we encourage you to visit your own Fourth Avenue Merchants every day of the year!"