By Chad Ingram
The County of Haliburton has cancelled Hike Haliburton: Winter Edition, the county-run snowshoe festival that had been scheduled to take place in February.
Back in October, county councillors had enthusiastically and unanimously approved going ahead with the festival, which offers a series of guided snowshoe hikes throughout the county. The event is a spin-off of the popular Hike Haliburton Festival, which takes place each September, but was cancelled in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The winter edition, which had been scheduled to take place Feb. 6 and 7 and would have been the second annual event, was going to have COVID-19 safety protocols in place, including pre-registration and contact tracing. However, with rising daily confirmed case numbers in the province and with Ontario currently under a government-mandated lockdown affecting some businesses, the county issued a cancellation notice in late December.
“We understand that this announcement will be disappointing to many, however with the current provincial lockdown and unknowns regarding future public health guidelines, we feel it is in the best interest for the health and safety of our community to cancel the event,” the notice read. “Thank you to everyone who has been involved in the event planning to date. We look forward to better news ahead and an exciting 2022 event.”