SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) Monday announced the 2020 Fort Massac Encampment, slated for Oct. 17-18 at Fort Massac State Park, will be canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“The Fort Massac Encampment is one of southern Illinois’ most treasured and popular fall festivals, drawing thousands of people from across the state, as well as neighboring states,” Colleen Callahan, IDNR director said. “Given the possibility the event will draw large crowds, the Department, in consultation with the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Governor’s Office, elected to cancel this year’s event. While we understand the importance of the Fort Massac Encampment, we must keep public health and safety top of mind. We’re looking forward to next year’s event and hope to make it better than ever.”
Offering educational programming and entertainment in the form of mock military battles, tactical demonstrations and military retreat ceremonies, as well as food and craft vendors and other family friendly activities, the event draws thousands of staff, volunteers, vendors and attendees which could potentially violate social distancing and crowd size requirements.
IDNR said staff look forward to beginning plans for the 2021 Fort Massac Encampment with help from local supporters including the City of Metropolis, Friends of Forth Massac, and local sponsors and volunteers.