Late last week, the Federal Government announced that non-essential gatherings of more than 500 people should not occur in an effort to limit the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19), with a ban implemented by NSW State Government on Monday.
With profound disappointment, the Committee of the Canowindra International Balloon Challenge have decided to cancel the event for this year.
While the new committee would all love to see the event take to the skies this year, they are also acutely aware of the need to protect the health of participants, visitors and residents. All tickets will be automatically refunded in full by ticketing agent, 123tix.com, to the credit card used to book those tickets.
The RSL branches in NSW, Queensland, Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia have also made the decision more than a month out from the April 25th memorials to cancel all ANZAC Day activities. “Unfortunately this includes Canowindra, but please feel free to personally lay a wreath at the Cenotaph in Memorial Park on ANZAC Day if you would like to,” said Christine Sampson from the Canowindra RSL Sub Branch.
With these sanctions in place, Cowra Shire Council has also made the decision to cancel Cowra’s Festival of International Understanding in April.
Other events to be postponed in Canowindra include the CEF Live Music at the Clubhouse on April 4th and the Canowindra Tigers Centenary Celebration Weekend in May.
“While the news that the first cases of Coronavirus have been confirmed in the Central West is very concerning, I think it’s important that we stay calm and don’t panic,” said Mr Andrew Gee, Federal Member for Calare.
“It was inevitable that this virus was going to reach our area at some point, and now that it has, we need to deal with it calmly and methodically. We need to be particularly conscious of those Australians in the high risk groups being older Australians and those with immune system deficiencies, and the need to take extra care around our aged care facilities and hospitals. We can all help by washing and sanitising hands, not coughing into hands and practising good hygiene,” continued Mr Gee.
With Australia experiencing these unprecedented times, it is more than likely that school’s may close and that the community may be forced to self-isolate for a period of up to 14 days.
Please stay up to date with the NSW Government and Federal Government announcements in the coming days to keep abreast of this unfolding situation.