GLOUCESTER (CBS) — The coronavirus has forced the postponement of a Gloucester tradition that is seen by people around the world thanks to social media. The Greasy Pole Contest, part of St. Peter’s Fiesta, won’t happen in June as organizers decided to call off the five-day festival, The Gloucester Daily Times reports.

The annual run for the Italian flag at the end of the slick 40-foot wooden pole has attracted millions of Facebook video views in recent years. The 93-year-old festival also features entertainment, a road race and a boat race.

Organizers told the newspaper that they are considering a make-up date on Sept. 12 and 13 for a scaled-down celebration. They said there’s just too uncertainty about whether it will be safe to hold a gathering at the end of June.

“Nobody on the committee wants to be responsible for an outbreak in the city of Gloucester,” Fiesta Committee member Anthony Cusumano said. “That would be devastating.”


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