Woodstock 50 Loses Venue License
Watkins Glen International, the planned location for the embattled Woodstock 50 anniversary festival, has revoked the event’s access to the site. “Watkins Glen International terminated the site license for Woodstock pursuant to provisions of the contract. As such, WGI will not be hosting the Woodstock 50 Festival,” venue management said in a statement.
Woodstock organizers claim the festival will take place at another yet-to-be-determined location. “We confirm that we will not be moving forward with Watkins Glen as a venue for Woodstock 50,” representatives said in a statement. “We are in discussions with another venue to host Woodstock 50 on August 16th—18th and look forward to sharing the new location when tickets go on sale in the coming weeks.”
Schuyler County administrator Tim O’Hearn commended the venue’s decision in a diplomatic statement of his own. “This comes as a major disappointment to us in that we looked forward to hosting this iconic event in our community,” he said. “While today’s announcement is difficult to absorb, it is not completely unexpected, given the well-publicized delays related to this planned event. We commend Watkins Glen International for their actions, which we feel are in the overall best interest of the community.”
Woodstock 50 was scheduled to take place at Watkins Glen in upstate New York on August 16–18, but its demise has seemed inevitable for months. The festival still hasn’t started selling tickets or even confirmed how much tickets might cost after initially announcing sales would begin on April 22. Shortly after that date was postponed, Woodstock 50’s primary financial backer announced the festival’s cancelation, leading to an ongoing legal battle over whether the company had the right to do so. The festival’s production company also pulled out.
Chief organizer Michael Lang, who planned the original Woodstock festival in 1969, has insisted in recent weeks that the festival will take place. The Killers, Dead & Company, and Jay-Z are scheduled to headline.
Update (6/11): CID Entertainment, the production company that replaced Woodstock 50’s original producer Superfly, has pulled out of the event, Billboard reports. The New York State Department of Health also issued a statement saying the festival’s permit application was rescinded.