CUMMING, Ga. — The City of Cumming will hold its annual Thomas-Mashburn Steam Engine Parade July 4, but the celebration will be somewhat different in its 63rd year. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the city will take measures to ensure social distancing is maintained at the event that regularly draws thousands each Independence Day.

The parade route is being extended this year to allow groups to maintain spacing. It will begin at the Forsyth County Tax Commissioner’s Office on Tribble Gap Road and move south along Tribble Gap and Castleberry Road before ending at the Cumming Fairgrounds.

A statement from the city said the move is in response to Gov. Brain Kemp’s May 28 executive order that limits gathering groups to 25 people with at least 6 feet of space between each group.

“By extending the parade route, city leaders and parade organizers hope to better allow for the additional space needed to meet the 6-foot social distancing guideline,” the city said. “Spectators are also encouraged to take any other precautions they feel are warranted, such as wearing masks or face coverings, in addition to the traditional earplugs and sunscreen.”

Cumming will also hold its annual fireworks ceremony beginning at 9:30 p.m. at the Cumming Fairgrounds July 4, but the event will also see changes this year. Live music and eating and dancing contests originally scheduled to take place have been cancelled, and the city is also requesting that groups maintain social distancing during the show.

The Fairgrounds will open around 4 p.m., and the city said some vendors may be on site, depending on availability.

“We are definitely in the midst of an unprecedented time in American history — one that has been tragic for so many individuals and families,” said Mayor Troy Brumbalow. “But throughout our history, Americans have always pulled together to overcome challenges and tragedies, and this one is no different. That’s why we felt it was important to move forward with our July 4th activities.”

Those attending the parade can park at the City of Cumming and Forsyth County government parking decks on Castleberry Road, Cumming City Hall and at the Forsyth County Administration Building. Parking will also be available at Forsyth Central High School, Otwell Middle School and Cumming Elementary School.

Load comments