PEMBERTON, B.C. (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Three years after the first and only Pemberton festival brought touring giants such as Coldplay and Jay-Z to British Columbia, local officials have been advocating for a return of the event, though the festival's promoter Live Nation doesn't seem terribly interested.
Though the festival drew more than 40,000 fans to the site near the town of Pemberton in 2008, plans for a return of the festival in 2009 were put on hiatus and since then, Live Nation has said that they wish to return, but need to find a way to make the festival financially feasible.
Pemberton city fathers have been eager to see the event return, as the 2008 festival generated an estimated $20 million for the local economy. According to local newspaper The Whistler Question, Pemberton Mayor Jordan Sturdy even traveled to England to appeal to the original producer of the festival, Live Nation's Shane Bourbonnais for a return of the event, but to no avail.
Bourbonnais, who has since moved to Live Nation's UK office, originally had a house in Pemberton and was a passionate advocate for the inaugural edition of the festival. The management of the (non) festival is now reportedly in the hands of Live Nation's Vancouver office.
Pemberton officials have also tried to explore the possibility of inviting a different promoter to stage a similar event on the site, but a recent decision by the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) appears to have put the kibosh on that option. Live Nation already has a agreement with the ALC over the festival site, and the ALC declined to amend that agreement, stating in their decision that "[The ALC] has no confidence that the interests of agriculture will be served by now allowing one or more promoters to use these good agricultural lands."
"It’s very unfortunate because it minimizes our ability to negotiate with various proponents," Mayor Jordan Sturdy told the Whistler Question. "That said, we are continuing to work with Live Nation to host an event here in Pemberton. Those discussions are ongoing." – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers