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Festival-goers ride the ferris wheel in front of St. Anthony’s Church in Watertown during the 97th annual Mount Carmel Feast. Watertown Daily Times

WATERTOWN — The annual feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel at St. Anthony’s Church, 850 Arsenal St., has once again been canceled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Focusing on the safety, health and well-being of the general public and church members who work the Mount Carmel Feast event, “it is not possible” to have the usual three-day festival with concession, rides and fireworks, according to a statement posted to the church’s website.

The church’s statement also attributed the event cancellation to state Department of Health regulations and protocols that are subject to change weekly, and sometimes daily.

Even though the festival is canceled, the church’s statement states that there will be a Sunday Mount Carmel procession on June 27 and that church officials are “exploring” the possibility of having a drive-thru menu on June 25 and 26.

The event was also canceled last summer at the peak of the pandemic. The 2021 version would have been the 105th annual edition of the festival, first held in 1916 to celebrate and promote family activities, food, entertainment and spirituality.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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