Parachute music festival canned

Last updated 15:21 27/03/2014
parachute festival
FAIRFAX NZ

NO MORE: Parachute Music Festival has been canned after 24 years.

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The Parachute music festival has been cancelled - for good.

Parachute chief executive and festival founder Mark de Jong today announced that the annual event, which is held at Hamilton's Mystery Creek, was no longer viable financially.

"Our Board doesn't believe it is prudent to continue the event," he said.

"Continuing the festival will put all the other activities of Parachute Music at risk."

Parachute is New Zealand's longest-running music festival, having run for 24 years.

"It's no secret that running an event of this scale in Australasia has become increasingly harder to do in a saturated events market" de Jong said.

"Over the last few years, we've reduced ticket prices, slashed operational budgets, increased artist spend and done many other things to try to make this festival work."

But he said organisers had come to the point where they believed the festival's season was at an end.

"The last thing we want to do is to ruin this festival's legacy by forcing it past a natural conclusion," he said.

Parachute Music would now focus its energies on the other core activities including the development of emerging musicians, artist-mentoring, management and training, as well as its community recording studios.

"We are also exploring some ideas for new events, watch this space," de Jong said.

"We have nothing but fond memories of so many festivals, and we are deeply grateful for the thousands of supporters, volunteers, artists and punters who have been on this journey with us. We look forward to continuing this journey together as we move into a new season."

This year's festival was held at Mystery Creek in January where Australian Idol winner, Stan Walker, was among acts.

Numbers were noticeably down, with plenty of room in the usually overcrowded seating during morning worship.

De Jong said all pre-purchased tickets to the 2015 event would be refunded in full from iTicket.co.nz.

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- Waikato

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