CNE, Royal Winter Fair planning to open to public in 2021

By Laura Carney and news staff

There is some positive news for the future of two iconic Toronto events that were forced to cancel last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) officials say they are moving forward with plans to open to the public after the late summer staple was cancelled in 2020.

The CNE confirms to 680 NEWS that the 2021 event will proceed as long as no government restrictions are in place that would stop the annual fair from moving ahead as scheduled.

“We are following Public Health Guidelines very carefully and will be proceeding unless governmental stipulations prevent us from doing so,” spokesperson Karen Lynch said.

The event, which is a major economic driver for the city, reported a loss of $6 million due to the cancellation of last year’s event. The event welcomed 1.5 million guests in 2019.

The 2021 version is scheduled to run from Aug. 20 to Sep. 6.

The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, which typically welcomes about 300,000 people, is also planning to welcome back guests in person in 2021.

A statement from the fair to 680 NEWS says the board of directors unanimously endorsed the plan for this years event, saying they “enthusiastically embrace the opportunity to once again welcome the very best in Canadian agriculture, local food, and equestrian sport to The Royal.”

The fair is set to run from Nov. 5-v14.

Both events take place annually at Exhibition Place.

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