King County Parks cancels Aug. 21 food celebration CHOMP! to protect health as delta variant COVID-19 cases surge
With COVID-19 cases surging across the region due to the highly contagious delta variant, King County Parks is prioritizing the safety of the community and has made the decision to cancel CHOMP!, the family- and kid-friendly hometown celebration of locally grown food and entertainment was scheduled for this Saturday, Aug. 21, at King County’s Marymoor Park.
Citing the potential increased health threat to the community posed by the rapid spike of COVID-19 cases in western Washington because of the delta variant, King County Parks and its partners agreed to cancel the 2021 CHOMP! local food celebration, scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 21 at Marymoor Park.
King County made plans to host the event in-person again this year back in the spring when COVID-19 cases were significantly lower. Unfortunately, over the last few weeks the region has seen the delta variant quickly spread. Based on current conditions, King County Parks believes that risk is too high for the event to continue.
“CHOMP! is one of the best family-friendly events around, and we were excited to come together this summer and celebrate the very best local fresh food, amazing live music, and fun interactive experiences that has made CHOMP! such a special day,” said King County Parks Director Warren Jimenez. “Our highest priority, however, is the health of our community members, performers, vendors and Parks staff, and canceling the event is the right thing to do.”
Jimenez said it was especially important to cancel the event recognizing many of the attendees are children and are unable to be protected with a vaccination at this time. He said Parks will make every effort to bring back CHOMP! in 2022, depending on future COVID-19 activity.
Since 2015, CHOMP! has supported King County Executive Dow Constantine’s Local Food Initiative by celebrating local farmers, chefs and restaurants using locally-sourced food, and local organizations specializing in healthy food, sustainability, and social justice.
CHOMP! is made possible by King County Parks and is produced by Artist Home, which produces such events as the successful Timber! Outdoor Music Festival at King County’s Tolt-MacDonald Park in Carnation, Timbrrr! Winter Festival in Leavenworth, and Doe Bay Fest on Orcas Island. Artist Home is known for integrating unique natural settings into the event experience, and uniting music, community, and nature.
“While we can’t gather together Saturday, we encourage you and your family to still get outside and enjoy King County Parks – Your Big Backyard, in a safe, responsible way,” Jimenez said.
Ideas for fun, safe alternatives for family adventures can be found at king county.gov/parks. For more information about CHOMP! and to sign up for e-mail updates about next year’s event, visit the website, chomplocal.org, or follow updates via the CHOMP! Facebook page and Facebook Event page.
• King County Parks
• Artist Home
• King County Local Food Initiative
FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Doug Williams, King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, 206-477-4543
About King County Parks
King County Parks - Your Big Backyard - offers 205 parks and 32,000 acres of open space, including popular destinations such as Marymoor Park and Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, plus 175 miles of regional trails, 250 miles of backcountry trails, and a world-class aquatic center. We envision parks, trails, and natural lands for all, sustained with the cooperative efforts of our community.