Pandemic stops Kingsville Folk Festival again

Kingsville Folk Festival co-founders and producers Michele and John Law announce the 2019 lineup at Carnegie Arts in Kingsville, April 11, 2019. The festival runs from August 9 to 11. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

Lovers of traditional folk and roots music are being offered options this year in Kingsville.

Due to uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, Kingsville Folk Music Festival organizers announced Tuesday that the event will once again not be presented in-person this summer.

“While we won’t be able to present the three-day Kingsville Folk Music Festival this year, we have some other exciting projects that we hope to make happen this summer,” read the statement from organizers John and Michelle Law.

Instead, folk music acts will be literally taken to the streets this summer, as Kingsville’s Open Streets initiative features “Kingsville, You Are My Sunshine”. Each Saturday evening from June 19 to September 11, two stages will feature free live music. The series will feature local and regional acts and is subject to provincial and local COVID-19 regulations.

The Laws say those supporters of the festival who had purchased tickets for last year’s cancelled event should hold them a little longer.

“To those of you who deferred your 2020 Festival tickets to 2021, we will continue to honour those tickets when we can have the festival again. No problem,” read the statement.

The most recent festival took place in 2019. It featured Juno Award-winner Serena Ryder as the headliner, along with the Grammy-nominated California duo The Milk Carton Kids.

The cancelled 2020 festival would have featured folk legend Judy Collins among others.

The festival is produced by the Sun Parlour Folk Music Society and is the only one of its kind between London and Detroit. The festival signed a five-year funding agreement with the town of Kingsville in 2019.