|Parade of Homes: COVID-19 Update for Builders|
Last Updated March 31, 2020
Parade of Homes Builders,
We hope this finds you and your team safe. We have not yet seen the crest of this virus in Minnesota, and while our state is doing a tremendous job sheltering in place, and our industry is doing a good job of working safely, we know the number of cases will continue to rise for the next several weeks. Like you, we can’t wait to get to the other side of this mountain.
But it’s going to take some time. As Dr. Anthony Fauci, NIAID Director says, “the virus sets the timetable.” Given this uncertainty, our governor’s shelter-in-place order, and our president’s call to maintain our distances through the end of this month, we obviously cannot restart the Parade of Homes in the near future.
There will come a moment, though, when we can, and I want to assure all of you that the board of directors has committed to an extension of the spring Parade of Homes. The power of our Parade of Homes is unmatched in the country – we have the strength of a 70-year brand. The balance of the marketing resources from this spring's event will be deployed at a later date this summer as we celebrate a return to housing and homeownership.
For those who don't have the historical picture of the central nature of the Parade of Homes to Housing First Minnesota, I want to share with you the strategic vision that was implemented four decades ago. The Parade has always been about more than just the tour – it's been a celebration of homeownership and the financial vehicle upon which your industry association provides all of its valuable services such as education, connections, and most elements of our industry advocacy.
This strategy has been successful beyond anyone's expectations. We are a nation-leading association upon which many others across the country model themselves. Our relaunch of the Parade of Homes ensures that we bring value to all of our spring participants, and continues our tradition of the tour being a centerpiece of our thriving organization.
It's clear to me and our senior team based on the engagement and feedback we are getting, which has never been higher, that our association is serving its vital role for this industry.
We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work through options and opportunities, but rest assured your elected and staff leadership are working tirelessly to navigate this difficult time with an eye toward a positive future.
In conclusion, we honestly believe that the Parade of Homes will be the unofficial announcement that housing is back in Minnesota, and by virtue of housing's leading role in our economy, the state's overall economy as well.
- President Gary Kraemer and the Housing First Minnesota Team