The peace and love festival will not go on as planned this summer.

Woodstock 50 has been officially canceled. The three-day music festival was to be held in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the first Woodstock concert held in 1969. Planning for the anniversary concert began in January, but in July, festival organizers were unable to secure permits and talent for the event. A last-ditch effort was made to move the concert from New York to Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland, but after a week of negotiations and planning, it was decided the concert would not go on.

On July 25, 2019, Howard County Executive Calvin Ball announced Merriweather Post Pavilion was in negotiations with Woodstock organizers. A few days later, there were rumors that the tickets for the event would be free, turning the concert into a benefit to support HeadCount, an organization that promotes voter registration. Unfortunately, organizers were ultimately unable to make it work. 

“We are saddened that a series of unforeseen setbacks has made it impossible to put on the festival we imagined with the great lineup we had booked and the social engagement we had anticipating,” said Michael Lang, co-founder of the Woodstock Music and Arts Festival. “We are greatly disappointed and thank all of our supporters, including the team at Merriweather Post Pavilion and Howard County Executive Calvin Ball."

Woodstock cancellation announcement

The concert date of Aug.16-18, to coincide with the anniversary of Woodstock, also put a time crunch on organizers and the participating artists. Last week, artists Jay Z and John Fogerty bowed out of the concert, and other performers were experiencing challenges in accommodating the event in their schedules.

Officials at Merriweather have expressed their hope for a future event in the tradition of Woodstock.

Do you think Woodstock can ever be recreated, or should we just leave it in history? Tell us in the comments!