CLEVELAND – One of Cleveland’s popular neighborhood festivals will not be held this year due to fears over recent gun violence in the area.
The 2016 Glenville Festival and Parade that was scheduled for August 13th has been canceled by the event planning committee, along with Glenville councilman Jeff Johnson.
Johnson tells Fox 8 that he will be sending out an explanation for the cancellation in his ward newsletter this week, but that, because of the recent increase in gun violence in Glenville, he is unsure that he can prevent violence at the two events.
The Glenville Festival and Parade planning committee and myself, for the first time in the seven years I have been Councilman, have doubts about our ability to prevent the violence from coming into the two events this year. I feel that the boldness and randomness of gun violence occurring weekly in Cleveland, including our area, creates too much uncertainty for the safety of citizens and for law enforcement officers and others working to protect us. I believe City Hall and other city leaders must do more to stop gun violence in our neighborhoods so that community events can occur without fear of participants becoming victims.
Johnson adds that in addition, he is worried about the “rising tension and threat against police officers here and across the nation.” He had been planning to hire 22 law enforcement officers to work the festival and parade this year, but is concerned about their safety if he does so.
Johnson hopes that the event can return in 2017. This is only the second time in 39 years that it has not been held.