In addition to having only 15 of the 75 usual vendors who would be spread out through the parking lot, Babbott said they also planned to require vendors to wear masks and encourage customers to do so, and increase the number of hand-washing stations.
In the aftermath of the graduation procession, the Greater Flagstaff Chamber of Commerce, which organizes the annual downtown 4th of July Parade, also released a statement asking the council to reconsider its decision not to grant a permit.
“The Mayor & Council’s recent suggestion to city staff to halt permits for events should be revisited in coming weeks, as we continue to see a downward trend in COVID-19 cases in the Flagstaff region, and throughout the state,” said Chamber President Julie Patrick in a statement. “Besides being a beacon of hope for our town & region, the economic impact of the Chamber’s parade event is quite large. The financial support our parade event generates for local Flagstaff shops and restaurants is critical.”
But Councilmember Jim McCarthy said that in his view, the lesson from graduation was not that other events should now be allowed to move forward, but the opposite.
If anything, he said, the possession showed that these kinds of events can’t occur in a socially distanced manner.
“I mean my first thought was, ‘Oh my god, I hope a bunch of people don’t get sick because of this parade,’” McCarthy said.