The Federació d’Entitats Locals de les Illes Balears, or FELIB, and Mayors are debating a new format for Patron Saint Festivals, which are likely to be very different from the traditional summer ones because of the coronavirus crisis.
A meeting was held on Wednesday between FELIB President, Antoni Salas, President of the Government, Francina Armengol; Consell President, Catalina Cladera and the Mayors of Migjorn and Llevant to discuss how to avoid crowds this summer and to debate the future of festivals.
Salas pointed out that it will be necessary to create unique guidelines for each Municipality depending on the evolution of the coronavirus and health guidelines that are in place at the time.
"It is very likely that the parties won’t be held and some entertainment companies have already offered virtual parties,” he said. “Another option would be to organise events with limited capacity or to hold concerts in town squares and broadcast them live on social media."
“We usually start the festivities in June in Porto Petro and don’t stop until the end of September in Calonge, but this year we will have to reinvent ourselves,” said Santanyí Mayor, Maria Pons. “In some places more than 1,000 people gather for dinners and more than 3,000 for the Cala d’Or fireworks, but that won’t be feasible, because the Municipalities can’t control the influx of people coming to the parties, so we will organise a big party for the neighbours when the coronavirus crisis has passed.”
The Mayors also took advantage of the meeting to voice their concerns about how the Tourism Sector will be affected this season and once again they insisted on the reactivation of the accumulated cash balances and pointed out that Council revenues will be reduced by tax breaks.
"The meeting went very well and each City Council was able to detail items that affect their particular Municipality, such as, the economy and worries over ERTEs in coastal areas,” said Artà Mayor, Manolo Galán.
Natalia Troya, from Son Servera, said she was “concerned for workers in the Tourism and Services Sectors."
They also discussed the operation of kindergartens and summer schools, which is due to be decided on Friday.