City will mark easing of pandemic restrictions with evening events

A Mini VillageFest is planned this evening to celebrate many of the COVID-19 restrictions that were lifted in Palm Springs and the state.

Palm Springs is joining the rest of the state today in lifting many of the restrictions implemented during the pandemic. The city plans a pair of special events to mark the occasion.

In addition to relaxed mask guidance, you can expect no more physical distancing requirements, capacity limits on businesses, or county tiers. A complete list of the changes can be found here.

The removal of restrictions is cause for celebration, and that’s just what the city plans.

While the official start of VillageFest, the city’s popular Thursday evening street fair, is slated for July 1, a “Mini VillageFest” is planned this evening from 5 PM-8 PM on Tahquitz Canyon Way between Palm Canyon Drive and Indian Canyon. Also planned is a ribbon cutting signaling the reopening of downtown businesses to full capacity. That event, put on by the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce, will be just after 5 PM on the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and Tahquitz Canyon Way.

Palm Springs has reported 126 deaths from COVID-19, including one death for the week ending June 7. That death was the first reported since mid-April. The city is among the leaders in residents receiving vaccinations, with nearly every person over the age of 18 either fully or partially vaccinated.

The city will end the week with another celebration, as Seward Johnson’s Forever Marilyn statue officially returns to Palm Springs — this time at the intersection of Belardo and Museum Way. The statue’s location has been the subject of lawsuits and protests in recent months, but it will be officially unveiled Sunday at 7 PM. Johnson’s 26-foot-tall statue depicts actress Marilyn Monroe in a scene from The Seven Year Itch,  wearing a white dress which is being blown upward by breeze coming from a subway grate she stands over.

In announcing the unveiling Monday, P.S. Resorts, which purchased the statue for $1 million with plans to return it to the city for the first time since 2014, said to expect a flyover by planes from the Palm Springs Air Museum, and a “dramatic sculpture unveiling” with the help of the Palm Springs Fire Department. They are inviting the public to wear white in honor of the well-known movie scene.

“Those of us that were at the original unveiling will never forget the excitement when the fire truck lifted the veil to reveal Forever Marilyn,” wrote moderators of a Facebook fan page for the statue. “It was an incredibly emotional moment and the crowd went wild!”

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ISSUES AT TRAM: Visitors hoping to cool off at the top of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway ran into a roadblock using the attraction’s website starting Memorial Day weekend. For 18 days starting May 28, the Tram’s ticketing website malfunctioned, bringing online ticket sales to a halt. Its website stated that tickets were sold out or offline. The ticketing website came back to life Monday morning, and is now processing tickets.  The outage also appeared to affect the Tramway’s email system and credit card processing. On May 31, a post on its Facebook page stated, “We are experiencing technical difficulties with our email system,” and asked visitors to call to follow up on unanswered emails. On Monday, spokesperson Greg Purdy could not say whether the incidents were malicious, but he did add they are “now under investigation by an outside IT firm.” As of today, the Tram is resuming normal operations, and online reservations are encouraged, but not required. Tickets can be purchased at the Valley Station on a first-come, first-served basis.

FLAG CEREMONY: The Palm Springs Police Department and the Palm Springs Fire Department joined Palm Springs American Legion Post 519 Monday at the post’s Unserviceable Flag Ceremony in honor of Flag Day. Post 519, at 400 N. Belardo Rd., regularly holds the ceremony and advises that if you have an American flag that is torn, dirty or no longer serviceable, you can bring it to Post 519 or any American Legion post and they will dispose of it in accordance with U.S. Flag Code. “We were honored to be invited to attend this event,” the Police Department wrote in a Facebook post, “and we thank American Legion 519 for their dedication and service to our community and country.”

CODE COMPLIANCE: The Palm Springs Code Compliance Department reported 117 activities for the week ended June 6 and issued 14 citations. Of the citations, 11 were issued for code violations and three were issued for vacation rental violations. Those numbers reflect 27 fewer activities than the prior week, including two fewer citations.


  • MIZELL: Tai Chi, Zumba, and a Master Gardener class are all on the schedule today at Mizell Center. A complete schedule of events, including how to register both in person and online, can be found here.


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