Roxodus Music Fest has been cancelled leaving ticket holders concerned about refunds.
A media release states due to heavy rains, the property at Edenvale Airport will not be ready in time to accommodate large crowds and performance stages.
Officials made an announcement via social media channels Wednesday morning, saying, “During the past couple of months, our venue at Edenvale Airport has battled tremendous rainy weather that has impacted our ability to produce the festival. It is with a heavy heart that we announce the cancellation of the Roxodus Music Festival this year.”
“Our team has worked tirelessly to find a solution in which the show can go on but unfortunately, we could not make it happen this year. Our dream of producing a ‘once in a lifetime experience’ has been put on hold as we take the much-needed time to nurture our venue into a premier landmark in Ontario.”
“We sincerely thank all of the artists, sponsors, partners, and neighbours who have supported us from the very beginning. The embrace from our community has meant the world to us and we hope to one day see our dream come to life. Information about ticket refunds will be released shortly. Sincerely, The Roxodus Team.”
The posts prompted hundreds of comments from people not buying the excuse of weather being a factor and concerns about the money they had already spent on tickets, camping, transportation and the money they have pre-loaded on their RFID wristbands (the event was to be cashless).
One ticketholder posted, “I don’t understand this, the weather has been great as of late. I have paid almost $3,000 to obtain RV parking and three VIP tickets. The rain issue may be an excuse to not refund monies.”
A local resident posted, “I live down the road… we have not had excessive amount of rain! Just say it like it is… you just weren’t prepared… better luck next time… good luck getting people to believe it will even happen if you try again.”
Roxodus was scheduled for July 10-14 and had advertised more than 25 performers including headliners Nickelback, Lynard Skynyrd, Kid Rock and Aerosmith.
In response to our request for an interview with organizers, media spokesperson Damien Nelson said, “Roxodus representatives are not available for interviews. We will provide information about refunds as soon as it is available.”
Clearview Mayor Doug Measures said a lot of time and energy, and investment on behalf of organizers, has gone into the planning of Roxodus and the cancellation is disappointing.
“Obviously there was an awful lot of work that council and staff put forward to get organizers to meet all of the requirements of a massive special event such as this and they did meet all of the requirements that council felt was necessary,” he said.
A special council meeting was held on June 19, when council passed a special event agreement and a temporary use zoning, giving organizers the go-ahead. Council gave approval despite a recommendation from consulting planner Darren Vella that the decision be deferred until all outstanding reports are provided. His report noted, about 18 hectares of woodland was cleared, and as much as 10 hectares of wetland has been cleared, filled and/or drained without proper permits.
“The agreement is still in place so the municipality will be protected as far as municipal financial loss which includes our legal fees…” said Measures, “but it’s certainly disappointing for the volunteers, the community organizations that were going to be part of this event and certainly the ticket holders.”
He said he intends to make an attempt to speak to promoters at MF Live to encourage refunds.
He said he doesn’t regret the approval, but it’s really disappointing that it’s come to this, but the decisions were made with the right information at the time.
Measures has confirmed the MTO permits were received and approvals were in place for traffic, policing, emergency response and fire.
He believes that it’s possible the ground at the site is indeed too wet to properly support the large-scale staging that is needed.
“I have not been made aware of any other reason, other than they believe the site was not ready to host the event,” said Measures.
As for next year, organizers will have to come back to council with another event plan if they want to go ahead.
Sunnidale councillor Connie Leishman has been outspoken about how difficult the planning process has been and the level of opposition from people living in the Edenvale area.
“I’m disappointed in the sense that they have done a lot of work and I know they’ve spent a lot of money and I would have liked to have seen a successful event happen,” she said Wednesday. “My neighbours are quite happy and I am probably going to sleep really well tonight.”