Chicago's Bud Billiken Parade Canceled

(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- For the first time in 91 years, the annual Bud Billiken Parade is cancelled, and organizers say their fundraising for scholarships has fallen short.

It's the latest major event to fall victim to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Bud Billiken Parade and events surrounding that annual back-to-school event usually raise enough money for scholarships to help as many as a dozen young people.

But not this year, says Myiti Sengstacke-Rice, president and CEO of the Chicago Defender Charities that produces the Bud Billiken Parade.

“We did have to come down on our scholarships. We did. We actually, normally, usually give about 11 scholarships. It’s down to 8.”

Sengstacke-Rice on Monday said the parade organizers also raise funds for the participants’ dance studios and for school supplies.

She says she’s still hoping someone will step up and help boost fundraising, so that at least three more students will get college scholarships.