To float or not to float? That is the question. Or maybe I should say: that was the question.
Within the last 10 days, there were two unexpected notices announcing the dual postponements of the highly anticipated Float Fest (July) and the inaugural Riverfest (August). Both announcements surprised the community, and quickly tongues started wagging about what it all meant. The tongue-waggers were blah blah blahing the Good, the Bad and the Ugly about why the two festivals were cancelled. That is a shame.
Relax people—it is not the end of the world. It is understandable why some people were surprised, but the rampant speculation and criticism is unwarranted and unfounded. There are valid reasons for the postponements, and both organizations promise to return in 2020.
Let’s talk about Float Fest first.
The organizers of Float Fest really wanted to make this event a reality for Gonzales in 2019. They had a lot of prominent acts lined up, including Ice Cube. They spent well over a hundred thousand dollars to clean up the site where the festival was going to take place just south of town. The site was cleared, but Mother Nature decided to show up and dumped way too much rain on exposed grounds and fields hindering organizers chances to have the site ready for the July show.
Here are the exact words used by Float Fest explaining why they postponed this year’s event for one year:
“We have been working around the clock to prepare the new festival site in Gonzales, but
at this time we don’t feel the grounds are ready to fully showcase everything Float Fest
is about. With weather, Gonzales saw an extraordinary amount of rain in May and June.
Although the site cleared, the rain created delays of construction. We want to provide a
first-class experience to our fans, therefore we will be finishing out the site so that it is
ready for the festival in 2020.”
So, there it is, and that’s all there is to it. Nothing more and nothing less.
They are coming back next year. They are spending more money on construction and infrastructure improvements. They are doing what is best for their paying customers and the performers. They are refunding 100 percent of the advance ticket sales. They have taken a financial hit in 2019 so that they can thrive, and the Float Fest can thrive in 2020. Who can ask for anything more?
It is not about the city, the leadership of the community, civic leaders, inept management and whatever other slander you can throw at people. It was a sound business decision and we should be grateful they are investing in our community and willing to do what’s best for all concern. I applaud them.
Our local Riverfest that was announced for August was also canceled. The reasons were different, but they were just as valid and sound as the reason to shut down Float Fest for one year.
Organizers of the Riverfest wanted to make it a more family-friendly event, and were working diligently on procuring vendors, bands and other attractions for the family—including a petting zoo. As time moved forward, they found that there were too many loose ends to tie down and not enough time to ensure that everything was done on schedule. Rather than hosting an inaugural event that was not properly nailed down or hastily put together, they decided to postpone it one year, so everything was planned properly and done right.
I say good for them. They were thinking about people—not profit or their image. If you can’t do it right in the amount of time you have, you bite the bullet and move it back—which is what they did. They both run businesses in this town and there are only so many hours in a day. They committed their own personal resources to launch this project, so everything spent on 2019 is a loss. I give them credit for trying, and I thank them for being smart enough to postpone one more year, so it is done right. It will be good for them, good for the patrons who attend, and good for our town.
So, I’m asking all of you social media divas to hold your comments and tongues until you know all the facts. It won’t hurt to wait once in awhile before you hit “send”.
There, I’ve got that off my chest.
Have a great weekend folks. Maybe I’ll see you on the Square at the Summer Concert Series on Friday night or Saturday at the Watermelon Thump in Luling. Carry on y’all.