Fort Edmonton Park delays re-opening to Canada Day due to COVID-19 concerns

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Visitors hoping to go to Fort Edmonton Park over the May long weekend will have to postpone their plans for a few weeks.

The city-owned heritage facility announced on Tuesday that the re-opening would be delayed until July 1 due to COVID-19 safety concerns. The park was originally slated to welcome guests back on May 22. Re-opening will be subject to any provincial public health orders.

Fort Edmonton Park has been undergoing renovations after receiving $165-million in funding from all three levels of government. The project includes new features and exhibits such as Indigenous Peoples’ Experience, new attractions added to the Johnny J. Jones Exposition (Midway), streamlined and improved access in the front entry plaza and expansion to the Hotel Selkirk with the addition of family-friendly rooms and event space.

The Indigenous Peoples Experience aims to provide visitors with an opportunity to learn more about First Nations and Metis peoples’ histories, culture and experiences through stories, music, artwork and text.

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“We can’t wait for Edmonton to see what we’ve been building,” Darren Dalgleish, the president and CEO of Fort Edmonton Management Company, said in a news release. “It’s going to be a totally new and immersive experience. We’re so proud of the new 30,000 square-foot Indigenous Peoples Experience, and the Midway will really be a chance for families just to have some old-fashioned fun which we could all use this summer.”

Alberta is currently in Step 1 of the province’s four-step re-opening strategy, which limits outdoor social gatherings to 10 people. All entertainment businesses and entities must remain closed under this step.

Earlier in April, Premier Jason Kenney said the majority of restrictions could be lifted in June as more Albertans get vaccinated.

jlabine@postmedia.com

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