Denver Arts & Venues said the uncertainty of timelines around COVID-19 recovery makes it difficult to plan in-person events the size of the popular festival.
The annual Five Points Jazz Festival has been delayed this year due to COVID-19. Denver Arts & Venues announced the delay on social media last month. The free festival traditionally takes place each year on the third Saturday of May and celebrates the history of Denver's Five Points neighborhood.
"We regretfully announce that we are delaying the in-person presentation of the 2021 Five Points Jazz Festival due to the Covid-19 pandemic," read a post on the organization's Facebook page. "We have produced the event in conjunction with businesses and organizations in the Five Points neighborhood for more than a dozen years. The neighborhood along Welton Street has a storied history in showcasing local and national jazz musicians."
Denver Arts & Venues said a number of its staff remain redeployed as a result of the pandemic, performing roles that support the city's response to COVID-19. Due to uncertainty of timelines for recovery, planning for live events of the scale of the festival are difficult, the organization said.
"We remain committed to celebrating the cultural heritage of Five Points and will look for unique ways to support this vibrant community both culturally and economically," the post said.
Last year's festival was interrupted as well due to the pandemic, then in its early stages. When it was clear an in-person event would not be possible, the festival transitioned to a virtual event. In partnership with Rocky Mountain Public Media, the festival will be presented on TV, radio, and online channels. The two-hour event is available on-demand at ArtsandVenues.com/5PJF.
Five Points, once known as the Harlem of the West, was home to several jazz clubs that played host to jazz music legends including Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, and more.