For the first time since its inception in 2009, the banks of the Murray River in Tocumwal, NSW will not be hosting thousands of music-loving punters, with the annual Strawberry Fields music festival officially postponed until 2021.
Traditionally announcing its lineup around the end of June, this year left punters feeling a little bit apprehensive about what to expect in 2020, with COVID-19 restrictions leaving the country’s live stages looking like something of a ghost town.
Now, the announcement has officially been made, with Strawberry Fields revealing that the festival’s 2020 event will not go ahead as planned. Festival Director Tara Medina explained that the decision was made out of respect for those who make it happening, noting it would be “inappropriate” to hold an event that brings in countless people from around the country.
“After much discussion, we believe this is in the best interests of our fans, our staff, the local community and all the emergency services who support this event,” Medina explained in a statement.
“Although we hope the current situation in Victoria improves dramatically in coming months, at the moment it feels inappropriate to consider bringing thousands of people to the region from primarily Melbourne & Sydney.
“We want to respect the space, health & wellbeing of the Berrigan Shire as well as the time of local emergency services who are already so busy fighting the pandemic day to day.”
Medina explained that typically, tickets to the event are usually sold out by this time of the year, but even with leaving their decision to cancel until the very last minute, they were faced “with the reality that it will not be possible until 2021.”
“Despite the heartbreak, we are seeing this as an important time to reset,” Medina concluded. “Our industry is called ‘creative’ for a reason – if there is anyone who will look for ways to adapt and move forward so that we can continue to inspire & share culture, it’s us.”
Though details about the lineup and dates for the 2021 event are too far down the line to speculate on at the current time, registrations for next year’s event are open via the festival’s website.