Mayor Brian Tierney is urging the public to enjoy today safely.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor Brian Tierney, is urging everyone across the council area to celebrate today (St Patrick's Day) safely.
It is the second successive year that the city and district's Spring Carnival celebrations have been pared back to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus.
"It's hard to believe it's a year since we took the decision to cancel our St Patrick's Day festivities as concern about the virus began to rise in our community," said Mayor Tierney.
"Our local businesses responded immediately and it's thanks to their proactive response that we managed to keep infection rates down in our area for so long.
"Who could have imagined that a year later we would still be living with this virus and that once again our Spring carnival celebrations would have to be put on hold.
"The message now - as it was then – is that our actions can and will make a difference.
"So once again I am asking that we please avoid unnecessary gatherings this St Patrick's Day – we know that by staying at home, following the guidance to wash our hands, socially distance and only make necessary journeys – that we can stop the spread."
Mayor Tierney sounded a note of optimism about the months ahead when the roll out of the vaccine locally should offer a return to some normality.
"We have come a long way and, as our vaccine programme continues to make progress, please give it a chance to have the positive effect we are all hoping for.
"Let's keep infection rates down while we continue to vaccinate those most vulnerable – let's make this final push to ensure we can begin the phased return to normal life.
"Let's do what we can to make things safer for our school children, our teachers, our front line workers and our retail staff as society begins to take those first forward steps.
"I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their efforts – these are unprecedented times and they call for a huge sacrifice from us all – but we can and will get through it.
"There will be some online and outdoor activities for you to enjoy through council's Spring Carnival Programme, with fairy trails, creative installations and outdoor displays to enjoy."
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