The Chandler Chamber Ostrich Festival will be postponed, event organizers announced March 13. The event was scheduled to run March 13-15.

"The Chandler Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the City of Chandler, determined that this decision is in the best interest in the safety and well-being of the community," read the statement announcing the event will be postponed. Officials said the Chandler Chamber and the city would work to find an alternative date for the festival.

All purchased tickets will be honored on those dates, information on refunds for festival-goers who can't attend on that date will be available at a later time, according to the release.

"This was not an easy decision and certainly not one we took lightly,” said Terri Kimble, President/CEO of the Chandler Chamber of Commerce in a release. "The Chamber and our partner, SLE have taken extraordinary efforts to ensure the safety of the public, however in wake of the President's Declaration of National Emergency, and the state’s Declaration of Public Health Emergency we feel it is in the best interests of our attendees, staff, vendors and all people involved that the festival is postponed. We urge everyone to follow the guidelines and protocols put forth by public health officials and the CDC.”

This year marks the first time in festival history that the event has been postponed.

"It's now unavoidable as the health and wellness of the community is the number one priority," read the statement.

Kimble told Community Impact Newspaper that the decision came after President Donald Trump announced a national emergency over the coronavirus. Kimble said about 500 volunteers would work over the course of several days to dismantle the rides and booths at the festival. Kimble said she was not sure when a new date would be announced.

"We need to heal and move forward, we need to support local businesses and vendors," Kimble said. "We have to support one another."