Reasons for Blue Ridge Country Festival Cancellation Questioned

Update from ABC 13 - WSET:

Pittsylvania County issued a statement on Facebook regarding the postponement of the festival.

According to that statement, Purpose Driven Events told county officials it was highly likely the event would be postponed due to COVID-19 concerns and thus did not provide the necessary documents as the event would not be held as scheduled.

"While the permits for the festival were rescinded, the event promoters stayed in consistent contact with the County and were transparent that COVID implications would likely require postponement of the event," the statement from Pittsylvania County says.

A spokesperson for the Virginia Department of Health says it had made no recommendation that the Blue Ridge Country Festival postpone the event due to COVID-19 as event organizers suggested.

"The health department did not request this to be canceled or postponed," the spokesperson said.


Organizers for the Blue Ridge Country Festival announced on Monday that they have had to postpone the event until next spring, citing the COVID pandemic as the reason.

However, reports show that the county rescinded their permits last week due to lack of compliance with action from the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors.

ABC 13 - WSET reports that a letter was sent to the organizers, Purpose Driven Events, by Pittsylvania County dated Sept. 21.

In the letter, County Administrator David Smitherman states that all permits for the Blue Ridge Country Festival are being revoked due to a lack of compliance.

"Specifically, the County does not possess sufficient or approved plans relating to among other things, traffic parking, camping and security," the letter states. "Many of these issues require a lead time of review that is not possible given the 10 days remaining before your event."

In addition to a list of requirements Purpose Driven Events must fulfill to hold the Blue Ridge Country Festival, Pittsylvania County is also demanding the organization pay the Meals Tax it is owed from two previous events.

More on this developing story from our media partner, ABC 13 - WSET.

Click here to read about the original Blue Ridge Country Festival postponement announcement.

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