Tulips in Orange City. (2019 photo)

Officials with the Orange City Tulip Festival have decided to cancel this year’s event due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

This is not the first time the tulip festival has been canceled. Back during World War II, the event was also called off. Tulip officials say they want to pause to take care of each other and find creative ways for the spirit of the festival to live on.

In addition to celebrating the 80th annual tulip festival, the town of Orange City was also going to celebrate its Sesquicentennial. Both celebrations were scheduled for May 14th, 15th, and 16th.

(By Dennis Morrice, KLEM, Le Mars)