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Bourbonnais Friendship Festival Postponed During Pandemic

Board remains hopeful for 2020 occurrence

Bourbonnais, IL – The Bourbonnais Friendship Festival Board and Village of Bourbonnais have announced the postponement of the Bourbonnais Friendship Festival until further notice.

The 45th annual event, originally scheduled for late June. 

“This event is more than just a carnival,” explained Mayor Paul Schore. “It is a gathering for Kankakee County to come together. We need each other now more than ever, but until we can safely accomplish that, we are respectively looking ahead to a healthier tomorrow.”

Since its origination, the five-day festival held on the grounds of the Bourbonnais Municipal Center has donated over half a million dollars back into Kankakee County through various organizations, educational institutions and individuals who strive to make a difference in the community.

Illinois’ Governor said over a month ago during a press conference he would advise cancelling festivals until there is a vaccine.

“Until we have a vaccine, which is months and months away, I would not risk having large groups of people getting together anywhere,” Pritzker said April 9th. “And I think that’s hard for everybody to hear, but that’s just a fact. They’re just, you know, even with testing and tracing and treating, it’s necessary for us to begin to make changes. It isn’t enough for me to say that it’s okay to have a big festival with a whole bunch of people gathering together.”

According to festival officials, the event dates could be rescheduled and flexible as-needed during alternative months (weather-permitting) and with consideration to other area festivals still scheduled.

“This was a difficult decision to make,” expressed Board Chairman, Bob Steinke, “but public health and safety comes first. We are extremely grateful for the continued support from our sponsors, volunteers and the community. As the situation evolves, we will be able to make a more-informed decision at a later time. Until then, thank you for your patience, and be well!”

For current information and announcements, visit www.bourbonnaisfriendshipfestival.com and follow the event on Facebook.

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