One Erie summertime favorite is making a return after a two-year hiatus.

Mayor Joe Schember said 2022 is Erie’s comeback year. One big event “coming back” is CelebrateErie.

“It’s a very local event and getting people involved, I think everybody loves it. We are really happy that COVID has kind of slowed down enough that we are able to do that again this year,”  said Mayor Joe Schember, (D), City of Erie.

Mayor Schember said it will be great to bring people together.

“For two years, you largely had to stay apart. There are people that I used to see all the time and I may have seen once in the last two years. I think that has a mental effect on us even if we don’t realize it. We get to be back with the people that we know and love and that is a blessing,” Schember said.

In the past, it’s been a $10 million boost to the local economy. Officials said they hope it to be bigger this year.

“We want to increase that amount this year to especially help those businesses and performers and artists that have been disproportionally affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Aaron Loncki, Celebrate Erie Executive Director.

The headliners and the Chalk Walk have returned, but there will be more interactive activities for this year’s event. Loncki said they have been working for months to make sure the event could return.

“Our team has been preliminarily planning for a couple months now, but we just wanted to take all the precautions before announcing,” Loncki said.

AHN Saint Vincent is one of the sponsors for this year’s event. Dr. Christopher Clark said it signified the positive direction going the community is going in.

“I think that this is perfect timing with everything that we have been through. It actually addresses all the stress that we have been under and it provides relief and support for what we have been through,” said Dr. Christopher Clark, AHN Saint Vincent Hospital.

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City of Erie leaders also announced that “Lights over Lake Erie,” the city’s Independence Day fireworks display, will be back this year as well.