(Note: Story updated to include postponement of candidate forum and changes to Ellis County Youth Expo Livestock Show and Rodeo.)

The Midlothian Chamber of Commerce is beginning to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and its schedule of events reflects this.

The Chamber has announced that a number of upcoming events have been postponed because of the emergency that has been declared in the state of Texas, in Ellis County and in Midlothian.

“I know it may have been a difficult couple of weeks as the COVID-19 virus has spread across the country impacting businesses and events,” Chamber president and CEO Laura Terhune told Chamber members in a letter. “However, I want to assure you the Chamber is here to help — we are all in this together and we will get through it!

“The Chamber is working on your behalf in our community and will provide information and resources to our Members and local businesses. We will continue to promote, support and advocate for you in the coming weeks and months.”

The Ellis County Market, a collaboration among the Midlothian, Waxahachie, Red Oak and Ennis Chambers, has been rescheduled for July 25 at the Ellis County Expo Center in Waxahachie.

The Ellis County Youth Expo’s Livestock Show has been canceled, but there will be an online sale that will take place from April 4-17 to help exhibitors who missed their opportunity to connect with buyers, Livestock Committee chairman Casher Dowell said Tuesday.

The Youth Expo’s rodeo will be rescheduled for June 5-6 along with related activities, Dowell announced.

The Signature Dish, an event that was scheduled to benefit Manna House, was scheduled for Sunday but has also been postponed. Also, the spring Midlothian Wine and Arts Festival has been rescheduled for June 13, Midlothian Chamber special events manager Allie Benham confirmed.

The Chamber’s forum for candidates for Midlothian City Council and Midlothian ISD Board of Trustees seats set for April 13 at the Midlothian Conference Center has also been postponed, Benham said. Both the city and school district joined other Ellis County political entities last week to postpone their elections from Saturday, May 2 to Tuesday, Nov. 3, following a proclamation from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott clearing the way for them to do so.

Benham said to keep an eye out for a new date later this year.

"The committee is passionate about providing the candidates a platform to connect with voters, and I know the candidates will be excited to share their ideas!" Benham said.

Other important events to bookmark, Benham added, are the annual Chamber auction and dinner on Sept. 12, the Southern Star Scramble golf tournament on Oct. 8, and the Fall Festival and Wine Walk on Nov. 7.

Parks & Rec changes

The Midlothian Parks and Recreation Department had a busy spring schedule slated, but the COVID-19 pandemic has thrown a wrench into their plans.

The annual Easter Egg Hunt scheduled for Saturday at the Midlothian Sports Complex has been called off, but the city hinted at a rescheduling for the Parktopia event in July. The Kids’ Fishing Derby set for April 18 at the Midlothian Community Park Pond will be rescheduled for a later date.

The 13th annual 8th Street Dance scheduled for Saturday, May 30 in downtown Midlothian featuring Professor D remains on schedule, according to the city. The 2020 summer Movies in the Park series is also still scheduled for June through August.