Cavendish Beach Music Festival organizers propose 2nd festival the following weekend

The festival organizers behind the Cavendish Beach Music Festival are proposing a second outdoor festival to take place the weekend after the July festival.  (Brittany Spencer/CBC - image credit)
The festival organizers behind the Cavendish Beach Music Festival are proposing a second outdoor festival to take place the weekend after the July festival. (Brittany Spencer/CBC - image credit)

A second music festival proposed for Cavendish has been getting mixed reactions so far, according to the area's mayor.

Organizers of the Cavendish Beach Music Festival are proposing another outdoor festival to take place the following weekend, on July 14 and 15.

"Our goal is to make it another signature event for Prince Edward Island and Atlantic Canada," said Ben Murphy, CEO of Whitecap Entertainment, the company behind the Cavendish Beach Music Festival.

The proposal is set to be discussed Feb. 6 at a public meeting held by the council for the Resort Municipality of Stanley Bridge, Hope River, Bayview, Cavendish and North Rustico.

Murphy said more details about the proposed festival will be unveiled in the coming weeks and at the public meeting, but that it would be a new event, not a continuation of the weekend before.

Brittany Spencer/CBC
Brittany Spencer/CBC

"We are very excited to kind of explain the brand and what the festival will be all about," he said.

Murphy said the second festival could benefit local businesses and he's looking forward to hearing from the community. He encouraged anyone with questions or concerns to attend the meeting.

Mayor Matthew Jelley has already been getting feedback.

"Certainly, there has been interest in it and I think, as you could expect, there are people who welcome another festival and there are people who have some concerns,"  he said.

Some of the concerns he's heard include worries about the strain of having festivals for two weekends in a row.

"Coming off the Cavendish Beach Music Festival and the increase in traffic and extra activity that goes along with that, there's concern about some fatigue of adding an additional event," he said.

Steve Bruce/CBC
Steve Bruce/CBC

The hope with music festivals like the Cavendish Beach Music Festival is to increase development and activity in the municipality, Jelley said, adding it can also have other benefits.

"It has put Cavendish on the map in Atlantic Canada as far as it goes to hosting events and what we have to offer as far as a campground and other accommodations and our ability of the community to work with the festival to make it a success," he said.

Council will weigh public input

Jelley said people will have the chance to ask questions directly to festival organizers and raise any issues at the public meeting.

"If there's an overwhelming opposition, then you know, we'll have to just take a look at different things," he said.

Depending on public feedback, Jelley said, the municipality would support making any necessary adjustments to address resident's questions or concerns. The planning board and council will make decisions based on that input, he added.

"In this community, we certainly believe in giving residents and businesses the chance to speak about major decisions that are happening," Jelley said.

Alongside the public meeting, the municipality will also be accepting written comments until Feb. 15.

Jelley said the council is aiming to make a decision on the proposal by the council meeting on Feb. 27.