The organizers for Woodstock 50 are insisting that the summer concert is still moving ahead as planned, just hours after the funding partner released a statement saying that it had been canceled.
The announcement was made on Monday by Dentsu Aegis Network, which said in a statement released to Billboard that the festival would not be moving forward. Woodstock 50 was scheduled to be held from August 16 to 18 at Watkins Glen International racetrack in Upstate New York, roughly 70 miles southwest of Syracuse. There had been no indication that it was in danger of being canceled before Monday’s announcement.
The funding agency said that planning was not able to ensure a festival of the highest quality, leading to the abrupt cancellation.
“Despite our tremendous investment of time, effort and commitment, we don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock Brand name while also ensuring the health and safety of the artists, partners and attendees,” the statement read.
But the organizers of the concert soon responded, The Poughkeepsie Journal noted, saying that the original statement was incorrect and the concert was still moving forward.
“Woodstock 50 vehemently denies the festival’s cancellation and legal remedy will (be) sought,” a statement from Woodstock 50 said.
The conflicting statements left it unclear just where the status of Woodstock 50 stood, though it was not clear where the organizers would receive funding if the funding agency were pulling out. State and local officials had been planning the events for months, The Poughkeepsie Journal reported.
Local officials had anticipated a total economic impact of between $30 million and $50 million for the concert, which took place at the site of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race at The Glen, one of the more unique NASCAR events as one of only two road courses on the sport’s circuit.
UPDATE: Woodstock 50 organizers insist that the festival has not been cancelled and that Dentsu Aegis Network spoke out of turn.
"Woodstock 50 vehemently denies the festival's cancellation and legal remedy will (be) sought," they said in a statement.https://t.co/KmjqeidON6
— The FADER (@thefader) April 29, 2019
Local officials expressed shock at the announcement that the festival had been canceled, saying it would be a major economic loss for Schuyler County.
“There has been substantial planning from both the state and county, as well as the town (of Dix) and Village of Watkins Glen for months now,” said Schuyler County Administrator Tim O’Hearn. “The state in particular has deployed tremendous resources to assist with planning efforts, geared toward a safe and responsible event.”
There was still no clarity whether Woodstock 50 had actually been canceled or not. Dentsu Aegis Network had not yet responded to the announcement from organizers that the concert was on.