New Zealand Festivals Facing Dismal Summer Season

Rhythm & Vines
Hannah Peters/Getty Images
– Rhythm & Vines
Spectators look down on the Vines stage on December 31, 2010 in Gisborne, New Zealand.

New Zealand’s festival promoters are urging music fans to get COVID-19 vaccinations if they are to enjoy a healthy summer season.

 The country was virus-free until the Delta strain saw 450 cases. As of September 13, only 33.3%of the country’s 4.35 million population had been double-vaccinated, with 32% with single shots.
In a report in the NZ Herald, promoters expressed concern that tougher alert level 1 restrictions could see capped crowds and international acts red-lighted make their events financially unviable. 
The sold-out Rhythm & Vines, which draws 20,000 on each of its four days during the New Year’s Eve break, delayed its bill announcement Sept. 10. 
Team Events’ Callam Mitchell told the paper the 25,000-capacity Electric Avenue in February was “all go for now” but “businesses could be decimated at the drop of a press conference.”