This year’s Tales of the Cocktail festival is not happening, due to concerns around the spread of COVID-19. While this doesn’t really come as surprise – most of the country remains on lockdown – but it is still a blow to the community, as the annual event has been a gathering place for the hospitality industry since its inception in 2002.
The announcement was made in a letter from Tales of The Cocktail Foundation President Caroline Rosen, which stressed the importance of safety and staying connected despite the sobering news of the cancellation.
“To us, it is critical to keep this community — one that is unwavering in its commitment to serving others — connected during these unprecedented times. In keeping with guidance from Mayor LaToya Cantrell to postpone or cancel all festivals in New Orleans, it goes without saying that Tales of the Cocktail® can not take place in its regular format in July,” explains Rosen. “Though it will be in a different form this year, we are formulating a plan to ensure we are able to honor a nearly two-decades-long tradition in ways that are safe and feasible.”
While things certainly won’t be the same without a physical gathering in the Bug Easy, Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is committed to finding ways to serve the hospitality community at large, sharing their plans for a “digital Tales 2020” as well as resources for those hurting due to this unprecedented global pandemic. And of course, hope for the future.
“Our greatest hope is that come July, our country might be in a position to enable us to convene in small groups in our favorite neighborhood watering holes,” shares Rosen. “Should the W.H.O., CDC and all pertinent local and state officials determine small gatherings are safe, we will do our best to develop ways to bring Tales to your communities directly. Until then, we look forward to sharing continued updates on how to experience Tales at home.”
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