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News October 27, 2015

Three festivals feel the heat from local councils

Three festivals feel the heat from local councils

Three festivals have felt the heat from local councils, with two cancelled and the other needing to find a new venue in six weeks.

Sydney’s Endless Summer announced this morning that the December 26 – 28 event in Gunnamatta Park in Cronulla has been cancelled. According to Event Founder and Director Mario Kalpoun, this is due to a decision by Sutherland Shire Council to cut $50,000 in sponsorship funding. It was, he said, too late to find another sponsor.

Kalpoun said, “The event is a free community event, not ticketed, and there is no way this close to the event launching that we can hope to make up a $50,000 budget shortfall. It is devastating.”

Last month, the St. George and Sutherland Shire Leader quoted Sutherland Shire councillor Kevin Schreiber as saying the money should be spent instead on community services. He suggested the Council should only offer $20,000 to clean up after the event. Schreiber claimed Council had been asked for $150,000 by the festival.

Last years’ inaugural Endless Summer drew 50,000 over three days, providing a thriving business for local stall-holders. This year Kalpoun expected 60,000 as international acts were on the bill. “I love the Cronulla region. It’s where I live and run a business, which is why I was so happy to bring the Endless Summer Festival to the area. It benefited so many businesses. But, that said, we’ll be back even bigger and better next year.”

Yesterday, the inaugural Marmalade Skies, to be held December 12 and 13 in Goulburn, was cancelled due to bushfire risk.

In a posting, promoters revealed, “During a scheduled site inspection, Goulburn Mulwareee Council, alongside the local police and fire department, have decided that there is too great a fire risk for the event to go ahead on the weekend of the 12-13 Dec.

“Marmalade Skies has been a strong supporter of the Rural Fire Service since our inception, naming them as our charity of choice. As such we respect the decision of Goulburn Mulwaree Council.”

Promoters Nick Kelly, James Nugent and Alexander Webb had earlier raised almost $22,000 in a crowd-funding campaign towards staging the event. They indicated that they would try and find another date in 2015 when the fire risk is not so high. But the 57 acts – including KLP, Luke Millions, Godwolf, Lime Cordiale, Lepers & Crooks, Acaddamy, Fishing, Flamingo and JOY – might not obviously all be available to perform then. Tickets were capped at 1,600.

Earlier this week the City of Perth refused permission for the New Year's Eve festival Origin NYE to go ahead at Wellington Square. In its third year, it was the first time it was to be held at the location, to be closer to the city.

Promoter Horizons Touring began selling tickets in September. First release tickets costing between $150 to $199 were sold out, as were most of the VIP tickets. Horizons expected 15,000 to attend to see a bill including Danny Brown, Andy C, Nina Las Vegas, Aluna George and Grandtheft.

But police and the City felt that a huge crowd on the night would create severe transport and anti-social problems.

Horizon posted on the festival’s Facebook: “So as you’ve probably all seen, the City of Perth in their infinite wisdom have decided to reject our NYE show. We will be working on a replacement venue and will be making a statement shortly. Thanks for your understanding.”

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