Manitoba community postpones program encouraging block parties

WINNIPEG — The RM of Stanley has cancelled plans to help residents facilitate block parties.

According to the RM of Stanley’s website, the block party program was postponed because of Manitoba Public Health’s prediction of increased COVID-19 cases in the coming weeks.

“We look forward to helping host block parties in the future to help build community. Thank you for your understanding,” the RM’s website said.

The RM had encouraged residents to host neighbourhood block parties to help build community.

In a post since taken down, the RM’s website said they needed residents willing to host block parties for their area.

“Hosts will receive a host package which includes everything they need to get organized along with a few prizes,” the post said.

The downloadable block party brochure, which is still online, includes information such as hosting instructions, things to consider, and an application form to submit to the RM office.

The brochure also encourages applicants to follow current public health guidelines.

Last Friday, RM of Stanley Reeve Morris Olafson told CTV News Winnipeg the parties were not intended for large groups, but a way for the community to reconnect after so much separation.

“We want people to get together. It’s been 18 months since people associated with each other and it’s opening up slightly, slowly. Right now, I can already see that,” Olafson said at the time. “It’s a small attempt on our part to facilitate some of these events.”

 According to the province’s COVID-19 dashboard, the RM currently has a total vaccine uptake of 22.2 per cent, which is the lowest in Manitoba.

Olafson said despite the low vaccination rates, it’s important for the well-being of communities to slowly and safely return to normal life.

With files from CTV’s Katherine Dow

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