The Calgary Stampede has issued a statement regarding the number of COVID-19 cases that were likely acquired at the 10-day event.
Alberta Health shared with event organizers that, of infections identified during and following the Calgary Stampede, it’s probable that 71 people caught the virus at the grounds.
The Stampede says that that number represents approximately seven cases per day of the festival. Of the total 528,998 attendees, this means that a total of 0.01% of guests contracted COVID-19.
“The Stampede has gone above and beyond when it comes to safety measures, and events across the country can learn a great deal,” said Dr. Jia Hu, public health physician advising the Stampede, in a media release.
“In context, over the past two weeks, 749 cases were reported across Alberta,” he continued. “The low number of cases associated with the Stampede is not unexpected and reinforces the safe operating measures put in place along with the effectiveness of vaccines.”
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After being put on hold in 2020 due to the pandemic, the Calgary Stampede made a comeback this year, with some changes and enhanced safety protocols in place. This included hand-sanitizing stations, more space on the midway, capacity limits, and a requirement to show proof of vaccine or receive a negative rapid COVID-19 test prior to entering Nashville North.
However, this year’s Stampede still welcomed many of the iconic experiences that guests have come to expect, including the afternoon rodeo, Dog Bowl, midway rides and games, inventive food and beverages, and plenty of live music.
As the country’s first event of this size since the onset of the pandemic, the Calgary Stampede laid the initial groundwork for the return of in-person community celebrations to both Calgary and Canada, and event organizers were pleased with the outcome of the festivities.
“This year, our community celebration was the first step in the safe return of live events for our city and our country,” said Interim CEO Dana Peers.
“We believe Stampede 2021 was a success. We committed to operating safely, and these results show the effectiveness of the enhanced safety measures that were put in place.”