Business News Legal Live Business

Woodstock 50 venue cancelled over after payment deadline missed

By | Published on Friday 14 June 2019

Woodstock 50

The venue that was due to host the Woodstock 50 event in August bailed on the festival because of an overdue payment. We know this because of a new filing with the New York courts by Dentsu, the marketing group which was the original financial backer for the 50th anniversary Woodstock bash.

The Watkins Glen International motor racing track announced on Monday that it would no longer be hosting the event, stating that it had “terminated the site licence for Woodstock pursuant to provisions of the contract. As such, WGI will not be hosting the Woodstock 50 Festival”. Reps for the Woodstock company quickly announced that they were already in talks with an alternative site.

The loss of its venue was the latest setback for Woodstock 50, which is embroiled in a legal battle with former backer Dentsu over monies the marketing company took out of the event’s bank account when it bailed on the project in late April. In its latest submission to the court, Dentsu said that it was now impossible for Woodstock 50 to go ahead on the originally planned August dates, and therefore its dispute with the Woodstock company over the withdrawn $18.5 million was “moot”.

But possibly more interestingly, the Dentsu filing also included correspondence from Watkins Glen International regarding its decision to cancel. According to the Poughkeepsie Journal, that correspondence revealed that the cancellation came after Woodstock 50 failed to make a $150,000 payment that was due on 15 May.

Letters terminating the venue contract were then sent by registered mail to Dentsu and the Woodstock company on 3 Jun. The latter was returned by the post office, so WGI sent an email to both parties on 7 Jun confirming the cancellation. A separate notification of said cancellation was then set to various local authorities, including the mayor, the police and the department of transportation.

Team Woodstock have remained bullish about their event – adamant it will go ahead – throughout all the various setbacks. Though without a venue, and having lost a key backer and production partner, and with tickets still to go on sale, a 16 Aug kick off seems increasingly ambitious.