The city of Benicia will not hold a Fourth of July celebration this year due to concerns over large gatherings amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo courtesy of Elisha Terada/Unsplash)

Benicia residents will have to look elsewhere for 4th of July entertainment this year.

The city announced Monday that it has canceled the July 3rd Torchlight Parade and fireworks show on July 4 as Solano County remains in the restrictive red tier.

“Those communities that have announced plans to host 4th of July festivities are able to do so because they have venues, such as amphitheaters or other spaces, where attendance can be limited and controlled. In Benicia, we don’t have the facilities that would allow to limit the size of mass gatherings,” said Benicia City Manager Erik Upson in a statement released by the city on Monday. “The safety of our community remains our top priority. We have the end of this pandemic in sight and can look forward to celebrating again as a community next year.”

About 20,000 spectators visit the dual events each year, officials said.

The decision to cancel the events was made after the Governor’s Office didn’t provide enough information regarding whether mass gatherings will still be allowed once the tier system is eliminated on June 15, Benicia officials added.

“Smaller neighborhood celebrations are encouraged,” officials said in the same press release. “The City’s Parks and Community Services Department will soon announce exciting details of fun 4th of July activities to bring neighborhoods together.”