The 2020 edition of the Cigar Heritage Festival will not be happening, as the event’s organizers have decided that they won’t be able to hold the event in March as hoped.
“It looks like with COVID-19 on the rise again, the City of Tampa may not be ready to give permits for any March 2021 events,” said Lisa Figueredo, owner and promoter of the festival. She cited the fact that the city’s St. Paddy’s Day Parade had been canceled, along with other events scheduled in March, as well as that the city can only provide a 30-day notice if it decides to cancel outdoor events, for making it impractical to schedule an event in the spring.
Originally scheduled for early December, organizers of the festival had hoped to host it on March 7 after delaying it in October 2020. Citing the issues of weather, organizers decided not to try to host the event in the summer.
The Cigar Heritage Festival celebrates Tampa’s cigar making heritage,which has earned it the nickname of “Cigar City.” It has been sponsored by Arturo Fuente and J.C. Newman Cigar Co. in recent years, both of which have their headquarters in Tampa’s Ybor City. The event features a number of Tampa-based cigar makers, as well as live music, food trucks and approximately 150 vendors. There are also a number of events held throughout the weekend at local cigar shops as part of the festivities. The festival is free to the public to attend, though there is an option for VIP tickets which provide access to catered food and drink as well as a selection of cigars and reserved seating.
A date for the 2021 festival has not yet been decided, as organizers are waiting for the NFL to release its schedule so as not to conflict with a Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ home game.
The event has been operating in its current format since 2015, when it was brought back by Cigar City Magazine.