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The Ekka Has Been Cancelled for the Second Year in a Row

Before 2020, the August event had only ever been cancelled twice in its 144-year history: during the Spanish Flu and World War II.
By Sarah Ward
August 02, 2021
By Sarah Ward
August 02, 2021

In 2020, when the Australian Government tightened its restrictions on public gatherings and social distancing in a bid to contain COVID-19, the country's flurry of event cancellations included the Ekka. It might now be 2021, but given that southeast Queensland is under lockdown again in an attempt to stop the region's latest coronavirus outbreak — and that those stay-at-home conditions will continue until at least 4pm on Sunday, August 8 — the annual show has just shuttered its 2021 plans.

As announced at Queensland's daily COVID-19 press conference, Deputy Premier Steven Miles said that "the lockdown extends beyond the intended start day of the Ekka, so that means we've had to make the very regrettable decision to advise the Ekka to cancel their event for this year. It will not be able to go ahead."

This year's event was due to take over the Brisbane Showgrounds from Saturday, August 7–Sunday, August 15. First held in 1876, this is only the fourth time in the show's 144-year history that it has been cancelled — with previous cancellations in 1919 and 1942 due to the Spanish Flu and World War 11, respectively, and in 2020.

The Ekka joins a growing list of big events that have been impacted by the pandemic for two consecutive years — such as Bluesfest, Splendour in the Grass, Vivid Sydney and the Royal Melbourne Show.

The 2021 Ekka will no longer take place from Saturday, August 7–Sunday, August 15. For more information, visit the show's website.

For more information about the status of COVID-19 in Queensland, head to the QLD COVID-19 hub and the Queensland Health website. More details about the lockdown and associated restrictions can also be found on the Queensland Health website.

Published on August 02, 2021 by Sarah Ward
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