The www.ReggaeontheRiver.com website states: “Reggae on the River 2019 has been cancelled. Refunds will be issued to all ticket holders within 10 business days”.
This comes as no surprise to reggae insiders who have been trying to grasp the start-and-stop methods of producers, High Times, who first delayed the line-up announcement but pushed ticket sales, then announced a line-up which included Sizzla, and then retracted it the next day because of local backlash from the LGBQ community in protest to his homophobic lyrics from 20 years ago (despite a stellar performance and no homophobic during his widely applauded performance at the 2016 staging of the Reggae On The River Concert).
Then an additional line-up was released on social media which included Queen Ifrica and Anthony B, among others. Then that line-up disappeared and the inside scoop was that it was not supposed to be announced. A goof up. The Reggae Festival Guide received a full page ad for the annual magazine with another version of the line-up and it seems things had settled…but the social media postings seemed to stop after Sizzla was announced.
This statement was released: Unfortunately, High Times in partnership with the Mateel Community Center has decided to cancel the 2019 Reggae on the River Festival. Due to the extraordinary expenses of trying to put on an event in such a remote location, we thought it was better to focus on 2020. All ticket holders will be refunded in full within 10 business days.
Thank you for understanding.
Cannabis Cup Help Team CannabisCup.com
The Mateel Community Center stated:
The Mateel Community Center is disappointed, shocked and saddened regarding the cancellation of Reggae on the River™ 2019. We are feeling the pain of the community for the loss of local income and its annual tradition. We will continue to pursue all avenues to restore the show. And will undoubtedly have a show at the Mateel the weekend of Reggae on the River™, August 2-4.