cne picket lines

Events are starting to abandon Exhibition Place because of lockout

The lockout at the CNE shows no sign of finishing, and event organizers are starting to react accordingly. 

JFL42, the comedy festival by Just For Laughs, has been moved from the Coca-Cola Centre and Queen Elizabeth Theatre on the Exhibition Grounds to the Scotiabank Arena and Winter Garden Theatre, respectively. 

Festival organizers said in a press announcement that Ticketmaster will be contacting ticket holders for Joe Rogan's show to work out their new seats in the coming weeks. 

Classic Albums Live also announced on Twitter that it will not cross a picket line and therefore, is cancelling its show on the property. 

IATSE Local 58, the stagehands union, has been locked out for over a month and negotiations with the city don't seem to be moving. 

According to the CNE, the fair is losing a ton of money from the lockout. CEO Virginia Ludy sent a letter to the city urging council to figure out the issue and negotiate with IATSE 58 soon, or risk a ton of revenue for the province and city. 

"While we are not party to this dispute between labour and employer, our event stands to be even more severely impacted if this situation continues," Ludy wrote in the letter. 

The city held a closed-door meeting yesterday to determine its next steps. Those details have not been released to the public yet, but Mayor John Tory said the decision needs to be made by Exhibition Place's board of governors.

Lead photo by

Justin Antheunis


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