Marine veteran Marvin Kadake, right, of the Keex’ Kwaan Dancers (People of Kake) shakes hands with Ed Kunz during the Grand Entrance for Celebration 2018 along Willoughby Avenue on Wednesday, June 6, 2018. The 2020 version of the every-other-year event had been tentatively scheduled for this summer, but those plans have been canceled, organizers announced. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)

Marine veteran Marvin Kadake, right, of the Keex’ Kwaan Dancers (People of Kake) shakes hands with Ed Kunz during the Grand Entrance for Celebration 2018 along Willoughby Avenue on Wednesday, June 6, 2018. The 2020 version of the every-other-year event had been tentatively scheduled for this summer, but those plans have been canceled, organizers announced. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)

Celebration 2021 canceled, organizers announce

It’s the second pandemic-related scheduling change for the event.

A celebration of Southeast Alaska Native arts and culture scheduled for this summer has been canceled, Sealaska Heritage Institute announced.

The nonprofit’s board of trustees will decide at a later date whether it’s safe to hold a Celebration in 2022, SHI said in a news release. One of the primary reasons for the cancellation is that the vaccine is not yet available for kids under age 16.

“We can’t have Celebration without our children,” said trustee Albert Kookesh in a news release.

[Virtual Celebration is ready to begin]

This is the second time the pandemic has caused a scheduling change for Celebration, which had been tentatively scheduled for June 2021 after being pushed back from the summer of 2020. Ordinarily, the event happens in June of even-numbered years in Juneau.

In lieu of the in-person event last June, SHI for the first time held a virtual Celebration that featured dance performances from 2018 and new content submitted by more than 540 people. Nearly 4,000 people watched the event on SHI’s YouTube.

• Contact Ben Hohenstatt at (907)308-4895 or bhohenstatt@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt.

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