SF Chinese New Year Parade canceled in 2021

The San Francisco Chinese Chamber of Commerce has canceled the 2021 Chinese New Year parade, due to public gathering concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

This February, KTVU will televise an evening news special highlighting many of the parade’s cherished moments, continuing the station’s long tradition as the broadcast partner of the Chinese New Year celebration.

“While we are very hopeful for positive changes in the coming year, we must deal with our current conditions and recognize that plans for everyone's safety in the future is our most important responsibility,” the chamber said in a statement.

Planning the Chinese New Year parade begins months in advance, and it is impossible to anticipate the nature of the coronavirus pandemic or the city’s public gathering guidelines this far out, the chamber said.

The parade is traditionally held on a Saturday night in February.

“The Chinese New Year parade is one of San Francisco’s most treasured celebrations,” KTVU senior vice president and general manager Mellynda Hartel said. “KTVU is honored to welcome the Year of the Ox.”

The Year of the Ox will arrive on Feb. 12, 2021. The ox represents honesty and diligence.

The Chinese Chamber of Commerce is planning a new display this year: “The Year of the Ox on Parade.” Painted ox statues will be displayed around San Francisco, each measuring about five feet high and six feet long.

“Like an ox, with fortitude and hard work, together we will build a bright and resilient 2021,” the chamber said.

The Chinese New Year is never on a fixed date. Instead, it falls between mid-January and mid-February based on the Chinese lunar calendar.

The current year is the Year of the Rat, and the upcoming Year of the Ox will be the second in the 12-year cycle.

The KTVU program celebrating the Year of the Ox will air on TV and online Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021 at 6 p.m. A similar celebratory program will air the same day on Chinese TV station KTSF.

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A lion dance team performs during San Francisco's Chinese New Year Parade, Feb. 11, 2017 (Photo by Yichuan Cao/NurPhoto via Getty Images) (Getty Images)