Knoxville Breaking News, Weather, Traffic, Sports | WBIR.com

Knoxville's St. Patrick's Day events, including the parade and Shamrock Fest, have been canceled

Public health officials say the risk of spreading the coronavirus are too great for large public events.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The organizers of the Knoxville's St. Patrick's Day celebrations are canceling the events planned this weekend in downtown Knoxville due to public safety concerns.

That includes the parade, Cel-O’Braughtion, and the Knox Shamrock Fest events that include the Lucky Kidney Run and Market Square concerts & festivities.

The East Tennessee Kidney Foundation announced sponsors the Shamrock Fest.

"The risk has become too great," says Executive Director, Katie Martin. "We are a nonprofit health organization; our priority is the health and safety of our community, especially high-risk populations such as dialysis patients and those with chronic kidney disease."

Based on CDC guidelines, organizations are cautioning people in at-risk groups, including older adults and those with chronic medical issues, against attending any large gatherings or events until the coronavirus' spread has subsided. 

RELATED: Facts not Fear: What Tennesseans should know about COVID-19

RELATED: Facts not Fear: Knox County health expert answers your COVID-19 questions

RELATED: Facts not Fear: How WBIR will be reporting the coronavirus

RELATED: Coronavirus live updates: Trump bans travel from most of Europe, Viking and Princess cruises suspend service

RELATED: List of cancellations and closings in Knoxville and East Tennessee due to coronavirus concerns

RELATED: SEC cancels remainder of SEC Tournament due to coronavirus

RELATED: Gov. Bill Lee declares state of emergency in Tennessee amid coronavirus response