As coronavirus has swept across North America and leaders have called for people to stay at home and practice self-isolation if they’re sick, events of all kinds have been getting postponed or cancelled.
Things have moved at what feels like an unnatural pace. After all, as of last Friday morning, the Ottawa Valley Farm Show was still going ahead, and there was still an open discussion about whether or not it should be cancelled.
Cancellations started to trickle in by the middle of the week leading up to March Break, before an explosion of cancellations and shutdowns hit on Friday, March 13.
Here’s the latest updates on what’s been cancelled and postponed.
UPDATED: Tuesday, March 24: Farm & Food Care Ontario cancels its April 15 annual conference.
Saturday, March 21: The Ontario Maple Syrup Producers’ Association cancels its Maple Weekend in Lanark and Leeds Counties, scheduled for April 4-5.
Wednesday, March 18
Holstein Canada cancels the National Holstein Convention and its AGM, scheduled for April 15-18 in Saskatchewan. As well, it suspended all on-farm services until April 3.
Tuesday, March 17
Ontario declares a state of emergency, prohibiting gatherings of over 50 people and shutting down private schools, bars, restaurants, libraries, child care centres, concert venues, theaters and recreational facilities.
Monday, March 16
The Ottawa Farmers’ Market announced it was postponing its markets starting March 22. It was open for the March 15 market.
TCO Agromart, a central Ontario ag input supplier, announced it would be postponing its March 20 pancake breakfast and March 27 grower meeting.
Western Ontario ag dealer, The Kucera Group, cancelled its March 24 Farming For Profit event.
Beef Farmers of Ontario cancels its Feedlot Management School.
The Canadian Dairy Xpo was postponed. The annual Stratford event is the largest dairy event in the country. Organizers said they were hoping to reschedule the April 1-2 event for a single day in the summer.
Friday, March 13
The Ottawa Valley Farm Show, the largest ag event in Eastern Ontario, cancelled. Was to run from March 17-19. Annually brings out over 10,000 people.
Canada’s Parliament shut down, but not before passing the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, the new tri-lateral trade agreement that replaced NAFTA.
Grain Farmers of Ontario cancels the March Classic, scheduled for March 24. Attendance has been close to 1000 people in recent years, according to the GFO.
Credit Valley Conservation, which operates out of Mississauga, cancelled its Sugarbush Maple Syrup Festival, which had events scheduled in six different areas starting in March and continuing through April.
Ontario Pork postponed its March 24-25 annual general meeting in Guelph.
Chicken Farmers of Ontario cancelled its March 26 annual general meeting.
Maizeing Acres, a grain elevator at Campbellford, postponed its customer appreciation day, originally scheduled for March 25.
McLean’s Berry Farm at Lakefield, Peterborough County, announced it would be shutting down its MapleFest for the season.
The Drayton Farm Show, scheduled for March 25 in Wellington County, was cancelled.
Thursday, March 12: Sunderland Maple Syrup Festival shut down; would’ve been the 25 anniversary.
The Ontario Government announced public schools would be closed for two additional weeks after March Break, until April 5.
Wednesday, March 11: Elmira Syrup Festival shut down.
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture also has a list of ag-related events that have been postponed or cancelled here: https://ofa.on.ca/ag-events-calendar/
Note: This page will continue to be updated as more events are cancelled or postponed.