BRUNSWICK, ME (CelebrityAccess) — Summer Jam Camp Out, a 3-day camping and music festival planned for southern Maine on July 4th weekend, has been canceled at the last minute by state officials over public health concerns.
The fest, which included more than a dozen bands, was slated to start on Friday at Thomas Point Beach & Campground in Brunswick and run through the weekend with a jam-band heavy lineup that included Kung Fu, Peak, Higher Education, Skull & Roses, Swimmer, and Rebel Alliance, among others.
In a statement posted to the festival’s social media, a spokesperson wrote: This was not the story we thought we were going to be writing this weekend. We had hoped this weekend would have become a story of communities, working together to show the State and the nation what a safe and sustainable future could look like for the outdoor entertainment community. Instead, we come to you with a heavy heart and a story of disappointment, and heartbreak.”
“The music community has been hit hard during Covid-19. Musicians, vendors, venues and you, our festival family, are ready and willing to pioneer and re envision what a safe and sustainable festival future can be. Unfortunately, the State Administration was unable to approve of the vision we had tirelessly developed.”
According to the Portal Press-Herald, The campground owner and the festival’s promoters, Portland-based FJRT Productions, said a representative of the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development made the determination that the event could not proceed, citing the live music stage and the fact that more than 50 tickets had been sold to the event.
Organizers did not reveal how many tickets had been sold, but were said they were expecting more than 500 fans for the festival, the Press-Herald reported.
The Press-Herald noted that some local residents were questioning how the event got as far as it did in the midst of a pandemic.
“A lot of people were asking, with so many fairs and festivals canceled, how could something like this take place given the COVID-19 protocols,” Brunswick Town Manager John Eldridge told the newspaper. “How could they be selling tickets?”
Mike Mulligan, owner of the campground, told the Press Herald that he had submitted his plan for the event to the state on June 23rd, and had updated it several times since then to reflect changes in the event.
Mulligan told the Press-Herald that he received a call from state officials on Wednesday afternoon to let him know he could not proceed with the festival.
“If we had gotten a yes or no last week, we would have announced it. That is why we waited. We thought, ‘If they’re considering it for this long, that shows promise,’ ” he said.
Roger Cyr, a partner in FJRT Productions, said the event was planned with social distancing in mind.
“We had a plan in place. We had six feet between tents, we had more than enough bathrooms and hand-washing stations. We were requiring everyone to wear masks, we were going to do temperature checks at the gate,” he told the Press-Herald.
According to Cyr, refunds will be offered next week, and they are considering trying to reschedule the festival.
Unlike many states in the U.S., Maine has had a relatively light brush with COVID-19. To date, the state has recorded about 3,300 cases and reported 105 deaths from the virus.