Inauguration of Pittsburgh’s First Black Mayor Forced to Go Virtual Amid Surge in Coronavirus Cases

Ed Gainey, Democratic candidate for Pittsburgh mayor, talks with reporters after voting in Pittsburgh, Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. Photo: Gene J. Puskar (AP)

The inauguration of Ed Gainey as Pittsburgh’s new mayor — expected by many to be a boisterous and grandiose in-person celebration like inaugurations past — will instead be held virtually on Jan. 3 because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, transition officials announced on Tuesday.

The public can view a livestream of the inauguration and swearing-in ceremony beginning at 1 p.m. on Jan. 3 on the city’s YouTube channel, Facebook and Twitter, as well as its TV channel.

City and transition leaders made the decision “in accordance with guidance from public health officials,” according to a release.

There will also be an interfaith prayer event the day before the inauguration, Jan. 2 at 3 p.m., livestreamed on Mr. Gainey’s Facebook page and Twitter.

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SOURCE: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Julian Routh