The Volim Valley Music Festival has been postponed until next year, says the organizers.
According to Central Okanagan Regional District communications officer Bruce Smith, the district was concerned with the lack of plans to ensure public safety so they rejected an application from the camping and music festival for a temporary-use permit.
“The board was concerned that with just over a month until the proposed festival was to be held, there were are number of key agencies that did not support it going ahead because of a lack of various plans required to ensure public safety,” said Smith via email.
“The key agencies were the RCMP and local fire department among others didn’t believe there was enough time to adequately address the outstanding areas that need to be addressed to their satisfaction.”
As well, the festival requires approval from the Agricultural Land Commission for non-farm use which would not be processed in time for the September festival dates, said Smith.
The festival was set to take place at Heartland Ranch or 5983 Highway East for Sept. 9 and 10 and the permit was rejected during a board meeting on July 24.
“We had a meeting with the local authorities and I was under the impression it was a meet and greet and to deal with the concerns… we took all their concerns, I was actively working with them, but there wasn’t enough time I guess,” said festival organizer Drew Schelz.
Schelz said the setback will allow organizers to better plan for next year.
“The fires were the biggest thing and the way the venue is on the back side of the hill is all grass. If something was to light up at the bottom of that it’d be a matter of seconds.
“Now we know what we need to do for next year. We definitely need to deal with the land a lot earlier. So now that we have this extra year we’ll be working with emergency services and taking an input that they have.”
The festival will still be held on the September-long weekend in 2018.
Full refunds are being offered and ticket holders are also given the option of keeping their ticket for the following year with a free t-shirt and a $30 food and beverage tab for 2018.