Unless the COVID-19 pandemic is squashed in the near future, the Great Cochrane Outhouse Races will be cancelled this year.

Dan Kroffat, one of the organizers, says he would dearly like to see the race proceed this year, and still holds out hope, but not if it means putting the health of the public at risk.

"First and foremost is the well being of our community. I think it would be inappropriate to ask or plan to have the outhouse races without having any concern over what we're dealing with right now."

It would take a drastic about-face of the coronavirus in order for the signature Cochrane event to proceed, he says.

"I spoke to several people, and everyone agrees that at this stage the appropriate thing is to cancel them, but we just want to leave the door open a crack in case this pandemic turns around."

Disappointing as this may be, there is something positive in the wind for the community to rally around after the pandemic.

Kroffat has been working in the background, putting together a special concert, tentatively to be held in mid-September. It would feature a top-notch lineup and support the Activettes food bank.

He's dubbed it the "Cochrane Cares: Lifting Spirits" concert.

"If we are able to pull off a concert with 5,000 to 10,000 people attending, and every dollar going towards helping our local food bank, it would be a great way to help them refurbish and restock."

He says he's received positive feedback on the idea from the mayor, possible performers, and potential sponsors.

Now we need to beat COVID-19.