Woodstock 50 organizers again denied venue permission

Written by on July 17, 2019

Courtesy of Woodstock 50The bad news just won’t stop for Woodstock 50 organizers.  They just lost their appeal to hold their planned event at Vernon Downs racetrack in Vernon, New York.

Town officials initially denied the request last week but gave promoters five days to appeal that decision.  However, Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. told Variety at the time that “what [promoters] have submitted to date has not met many of the requirements” to stage the festival, and that the chances of Woodstock 50 being held in Oneida County seemed “highly unlikely.”

Tuesday night, town officials voted unanimously to deny the appeal.

“Woodstock 50 is disappointed that the Town of Vernon has passed up the opportunity to hold the historic 50th Anniversary Festival by denying our robust and thoughtful proposal,” promoters said in a statement in response to Tuesday night’s vote.

“We regret that those in Vernon who supported Woodstock have been deprived of the once-in-a-lifetime chance to be part of the rebirth of a cultural peace movement that changed the world in 1969 and is what the world needs now,” the statement concluded, adding, “We want to thank the artists who stood by us.”

Woodstock 50 originally was supposed to happen August 16-18 at Watkins Glen International speedway in Watkins Glen, New York, about 120 miles southwest of Vernon.  A variety of issues have plagued the event since plans for the festival were announced in March, including the original financial backer pulling out and Watkins Glen speedway terminating the organizers’ license for the site, prompting the change of proposed venue to Vernon Downs.

Given that organizers now have just 29 days to secure a new site, if they’re to stick with their original proposed festival dates, the changes of Woodstock 50 happening appear very slim indeed.

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