Music festival organisers taking cautious approach

Singer Person Will performs during the 2020 Waitati Music Festival at Bland Park. PHOTO: ALLIED...
Singer Person Will performs during the 2020 Waitati Music Festival at Bland Park. PHOTO: ALLIED PRESS FILES
The Waitati Music Festival is set to return next year but organisers are taking a cautious approach.

Speaking at the Waikouaiti Coast Community Board meeting last week, Waitati Music Festival chairwoman Katie Peppercorn said the not-for-profit community event planned to return for the 10th time on March 5.

The event was able to take place at the Covid-19 traffic light system Green and Orange levels and attendees would need to show their vaccine pass, Ms Peppercorn said.

"At Red the event would not be able to go ahead."

All volunteers and performers would have to be vaccinated to be involved, and extra security would be required to check vaccine passes at the gate.

However, the organisers would be making a final call in January about holding the event due to the evolving pandemic situation.

"We don’t want to be a super-spreader event and it is possible that the vaccination won’t stop the spread of the virus, so we might find in our community case numbers are increasing exponentially."

The committee needed to sell about 850 tickets to break even, so if it looked like numbers were likely to be down because of a Covid-19 outbreak the organisers would consider moving the event to November 5 next year, she said.

"We will see how things are faring. I think two months out [from March] is a right amount of time to cancel an event and reschedule things."

If the event had to be rescheduled the committee would consider running a number of low-budget events for fewer than 100 people that would be low risk and could be a way of "keeping the name alive".

"But we would not use any grant money for these events."

The society was seeking $800 towards the cost of toilet hire, which the board approved, to be paid once it was confirmed the event was going ahead.

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