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Corn Festival mascots, from left, Kernel, Poppie and Kandy, were on hand for last year’s July 30 corn giveaway held in the parking lot of the city’s Shady Grove Sports Complex.

NORTH RIDGEVILLE

Last year when the annual Corn Festival was canceled because of the pandemic, the festival committee gave residents a sort of consolation prize, handing out free bags of corn on the cob.

The committee announced April 21 that the 2021 Corn Festival is again a victim of the coronavirus, forcing cancellation of this year’s Corn Festival that had been scheduled for Aug. 13-15.

Festival planners could not be reached for comment by press time and it is not known if they will organize another corn giveaway or some other event in place of the annual festival.

The Corn Festival is North Ridgeville’s premier summer event, and normally includes a parade, hundreds of vendors, fireworks, a car show, live entertainment and, of course, plenty of corn on the cob.

The event is free and attracts thousands of visitors.

In one of his weekly videotaped messages streamed on the city website, Mayor Kevin Corcoran in June stated he was talking with the festival committee about a hope to have the 2021 event.

Corcoran was out of town when the cancellation announcement was made and unavailable for comment.

A letter posted on the committee website and signed by committee President John Butkowski said the committee took into account Gov. Mike DeWine’s lifting of some restrictions, beginning in June, on large public events such as the Corn Festival.

However, Butkowski noted the coronavirus situation could change considerably between now and June.

“The North Ridgeville Corn Festival Committee takes many months to organize and coordinate the event,” Butkowski wrote. “Waiting to determine the situation with the coronavirus in June along with what the safety requirements for our members, visitors and vendors may be at that time, will not give us enough time to put the festival together.”

Butkowski went on to lament the cancellation of the festival that has highlighted North Ridgeville summers for 45 years.

“We know that families and businesses plan their attendance at the festival months in advance and we wanted to get our decision out as early as possible to help with their planning,” Butkowski continued. “The North Ridgeville Corn Festival Committee will be back to celebrate our 46th festival Aug. 12-14, 2022. We would like to thank our sponsors, volunteers and the community of North Ridgeville for their past support.”

There is no news yet on if the Fourth of July festivities will take place or be canceled.

Contact this reporter at tcorrigan@westlifenews.com or 440-871-5797.

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