VANCOUVER (CelebrityAccess) – The Vancouver Folk Music Festival has been canceled for 2023 and the summer fest will likely not return to its location at Jericho Beach.
The Vancouver Folk Music Festival Society (VFMFS) and producers of the festival say it was impossible to finance the 2023 event. The three-day folk music celebration was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
A statement from the festival’s society on Tuesday said it would take an extra $500,000 to produce a festival this summer, which would be “unfortunately not realistic or sustainable” with its current cash flow.
“After two years of COVID-related shut-downs, we came back in 2022 to find the festival environment greatly changed,” said Board President Mark Zuberbuhler in a press release. During an interview with CBC’s On the Coast this week, Zuberbuhler described the news as “bittersweet,” saying, “It’s been a very, very tough decision to make.”
B.C.’s Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport said that since 2021 the folk festival has received more than $400,000 in funding from the ministry, the B.C. Arts Council, and Amplify B.C. “The last three years have been incredibly challenging for people in the tourism and events industry in B.C,” said the statement.
Adding insult to injury, the VFMFS could be dissolved entirely. The society, a not-for-profit – hosts year-round concerts and events in addition to the volunteer-run festival.
“Given these difficulties and the current financial position of the society, the VFMFS board of directors has regrettably agreed on a recommendation to members that the society should cease operations by the end of March 2023 to help ensure the society meets its fiduciary obligations,” the statement read.
Members will vote on whether to dissolve the society on February 1 and an announcement regarding the future of the beloved fest is expected on February 2.