Blue Marble Jubilee cancelled for second consecutive year
Organizers of the yearly Blue Marble Jubilee, which was scheduled to be held May 16 at the Nevada County Fairgrounds, announced last week that it has been cancelled.
The event, a day-long festival, is one of two major yearly fundraisers organized by the Grass Valley Charter School Foundation for the school.
“We were holding off for as long as we felt possible,” said foundation president Wendy Willoughby, mentioning that the decision had really been made weeks ago in response to COVID-19 concerns and the resulting limits on large gatherings.
“When they put school on distance learning for that first month, we were still really hopeful about coming back mid-April or early May to continue to plan and get it done,” she said. “But once they made the call to extend distance learning to the remainder of the year, it ostensibly became impossible for us to move forward.”
Willoughby said that she and her fellow organizers have received reactions of understanding, but also sadness for the loss of this event since making the announcement.
“Aside from it being a fundraiser for the school, it has also taken on this life as a kind of spring celebration for us all to come together,” she said.
There are no plans for any rescheduling or replacement for the fundraiser.
Willoughby said that the foundation will now focus on planning for its Fall Walkathon, adding that it is fortunate to have done well enough in fundraisers over the years that it has a reserve to draw from.
According to Willoughby, no specific project had been assigned for the funds which would have been raised by the event.
She explained that it would have been a general fundraiser meant to fill any school-related need which could come up, the nature of which is particularly uncertain now.
This year’s event had been highly anticipated after the cancellation of last year’s Blue Marble Jubilee. Plans were halted then as a cautious response to threats alleged by an online conspiracy theory.
“In this year’s planning, a lot of it was just looking at what to keep and what to change from last year’s plans, because so much of that festival was basically ready to go,” she said.
However, Willoughby shared that she holds a positive outlook on this year’s cancellation with regards to what happened last year.
“With last year’s cancellation having been based on the potentiality of a crazy theory, it was devastating to have lost out on, and very frustrating,” she said. “In this instance, we can feel that we are at least doing what is responsible, maintaining proper distance all for a good reason.”
Victoria Penate is a staff writer with The Union.
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