The Iroquois Steeplechase announced today that the 2020 running of the storied racing event is canceled in the face of ongoing COVID-19 restrictions on large gatherings.
A beloved rite of spring, the 79th running of the Steeplechase was to have taken place June 27, a date chosen by organizers after they pushed it back from the original May 9 date. The day of fun on and off the track typically draws about 25,000 people to Percy Warner Park to celebrate with friends in the boxes and at large parties in the infield.
“It has been determined by rules and regulations from our city officials and health department that social distancing will still be in place on our scheduled date of June 27,” Steeplechase Chairman Dwight Hall said in a statement Monday. “We’re excited to announce in the coming days a citywide celebration planned for our patrons, which will continue to create excitement for one of Nashville’s most highly anticipated events. Our race meet benefits charities that impact our community, so it is our obligation to continue that tradition through another event which is better fitting to our restrictions.”
Steeplechase’s cancellation is the latest in a long list of fundraising events that ordinarily fill the city’s spring social calendar but have been postponed or cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. Early this month, the organizers of the Swan Ball, which benefits Cheekwood Estate and Gardens, said they would not hold the 58th annual white-tie gala planned for June 6.