After a chaotic third day at The Governors Ball Music Festival, the festival founders released a statement and apology to festival attendees for what went down on Randall’s Island Park.
As a result of the events, the founders hosted an AMA on Reddit Tuesday, June 4th to field questions about the events that transpired on June 2nd. The AMA beagn at 1 p.m. EST.
Many questions and concerns raised from Reddit users had to do with the emergency procedures issued on the third day of the festival. On the other hand, many users complained and raised concerns about security not IDing properly and adding a minimum age requirement for future festivals.
A lot of the responses from the Governors Ball team were a reiteration of the statement made before the AMA. In questions regarding the weather reports, Co-founder Tom Russell included photos of the weather reports in the morning and afternoon.
“I’ve addressed this a few different places, but this AMA is pretty big so happy to address again. Take a look at the weather reports we received in the morning here: https://imgur.com/a/5sMPTgQ and also the one we received in the afternoon here: https://imgur.com/a/UrGwTJx. This was echoed by the meteorologist who we spoke to on the phone so so so many times throughout the day, and this data showed us that the best time and way to save the show was to push gates back because the likelihood for severe weather was minimal.”
As for the possibility of raising the minimum age, Russell says they haven’t ruled the idea out.
“Over time our audience has gotten younger, and whether that’s due to the culture, the artists, etc is debatable,” Russell said. “We have explored going 18+ and we will continue to have those discussions.”
The message from the founders details the backstory of the events that occurred on Sunday, June 2nd. The festival includes in their statement that they talked with the professional weather service about the likelihood of thunderstorms and lightening starting early in the morning.
After speaking with city departments, the festival made a decision to communicate to festival attendees that they should not come to Randall’s Island.
Governors Ball staff continued to monitor the situation and called their weather service again at 11 a.m. The expected weather planned to hit between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. on June 2nd.
Festival staff made the decision to push the gate openings back to 6:30 p.m. after watching the weather throughout the early afternoon. Accordingly, Music started at 7 p.m. and those in Randall’s Island Park caught a few performances. Sheck Wes, Lily Allen and Nas all graced the stage with clear weather. But a large storm hit the festival around 9 p.m. wreaking havoc on the festival grounds and its attendees.
Attendees at Governors Ball to videos of the storm that hit. Vides from the event show extreme wind and rain sweeping the festival grounds.
Above all, no injuries were reported, An impressive feat for an evacuation of tens of thousands of people.
After the evacuation, the festival quickly announced that all Sunday ticket holders would be issued a refund. Likewise, it was announced that all 3-day ticket holders would be refunded pro-rata.
You can read the full statement issued by The Governors Ball team here.
The team responsible for the festival welcomes feedback as they prepare for The Governors Ball 10th anniversary. June 5th– 7th, 2020 is the planned date for next year’s festival.