This week, officials in both Nice and Menton made decisions to cancel beloved annual festivities in the name of public health.
It was a disappointing week for local merry-makers and visitors alike when decisions were made to cancel both the last day of Nice Carnival due to take place on Saturday and the Menton Lemon Festival, which sits on the border with Italy and attracts a huge number of Italian guests each year.
The Nice Carnival sees upward of 200,000 spectators each year and roughly 20% of them are of foreign origin. Mayor Christian Estrosi stresses the decision was made out of a desire to keep people safe, not to cause alarm. No cases of Covid-19 have been detected in the region and the move was purely precautionary.
The Lemon Festival, which traditionally celebrates the end of winter and arrival of spring, has been held since 1933, though its unofficial roots go back much further. The town’s link with Italy, in light of recent events, put authorities on high alert and the decision was made to put public safety before entertainment.
Needless to say, there is a huge amount of disappointment over the cancellations, though it is reported that locals are breathing small sighs of relief.
Both events are offering ticket refunds. Menton refunds can be made at the Tourism Office at 8 Avenue Boyer before 15th April, with appropriate documentation from ticket holders. The same can be done for the Nice Carnival. For tickets bought online, contact firstname.lastname@example.org and for those who have paper tickets, send the tickets, along with name, address, bank address and bank information (SWIFT,IBAN, BIC, etc) to Mairie de Nice, Direction du Carnaval- Service des reservations, 06364 Nice Cedex 4.