ACL Fest Canceled Due to COVID-19 in Texas
Organizers vow to return to Zilker Park in 2021 to celebrate the festival’s 20th anniversary
By Aaron Parsley
Photographs by Charles Reagan Hackleman and Greg Noire
ACL Fest has been canceled due to ongoing concerns around the spread of COVID-19 in Austin, across the state of Texas and the country.
“Austin City Limits Music Festival will no longer take place in 2020,” reads a message to fans on the event’s website that was also sent out by email Wednesday. “We would have loved to put on another memorable show this year, however, with the uncertainty surrounding the current situation in Texas, this decision is the only responsible solution. The health and safety of our fans, artists, partners, staff and the entire Austin community remains our highest priority.”
It’s a sad but not unexpected turn of events for ticket-holders and live music fans but organizers are already looking towards next year.
“We will return to Zilker Park on October 1–3 and October 8–10 to celebrate our 20th Anniversary,” the email continues.
Refunds will be given to fans with 2020 tickets who cannot attend the festival next year during those dates. For those who can, the email says they should keep the tickets to lock in access to next year’s festival at 2019 prices.
The cancellation comes after other big music festivals were called off. Coachella and Stagecoach were originally scheduled for April of 2020 in Indio, California, but moved to October due to the onset of the pandemic. They have since been canceled for 2020. The cancelation of SXSW in Austin in March was a controversial decision at the time and highlighted the seriousness of the emerging coronavirus health crisis.
The email wraps with a message of support for the Austin Parks Foundation and the community of music fans in Austin: “ACL Fest has always been rooted in tradition, our common love of live music, and our community. This includes supporting Austin Parks Foundation for the past 15 years to improve parks and green spaces across the city. Take this time to maintain your personal health and wellness by visiting austinparks.org to learn how you can safely enjoy and support parks in our area, and please continue to follow the advice of local officials, look out for each other, and stay safe.”