kingston fest toronto refund

Toronto festival Kingston Fest not offering refunds for chaotic show and fans aren't happy

The drama from the Kingston Music Festival continues as ticket holders try to figure out what exactly happened that led to the chaotic fallout.

Sunday's outdoor festival at Downsview Park had high hopes for being Canada’s largest outdoor show for dancehall and reggae music - but it was memorable for other reasons.

From an alleged lack of water, barricaded fences, overcrowding, long lines and crappy audio - fans have demanded full refunds for their experience.

A post shared from the festival's Instagram page aimed to shed light on the circumstances surrounding the outcome said "the fence breach and crowd surge" required the festival to initiate their security plan, which saw the closing of bars.

Bar closures also aimed to stop alleged thefts, according to the post.

One of the biggest complaints found on social media was that the festival had no available water for guests and that some spent hundreds of dollars on bottle service and VIP sections, to which there were very few or none at all.

Organizers say the crowd surge damaged production systems and required police involvement to push the crowd back and away from the stage.

A tweet from the Toronto Police Mounted Unit from Sunday night said there were multiple breaches in the fencing and a large crowd rushed the stage, confirming the organizers' statement.

Widely shared video shows fans running towards the stage while others fall to the ground and are nearly trampled.

"Our concern for the safety of our patrons and artists resulted in short stops in the show. All measures to control the show were put in place so we could successfully deliver all 4 artists as promised," continued KMF’s post.

But how did this mess start to begin with? A look at social media shows fans placing blame on security - or the alleged lack of security.

Others say better infrastructure was needed to keep the audio intact, including covers for exposed sound cables, which many said were the reason for sound issues.

It is important to note that the organizers and staff more than likely did not expect a surge from the crowd, and were probably unprepared for it when it happened.

Though as an expected part of any music festival, some fans argued security and staff should have been prepared for anything to happen - even surges.

When asked for additional comment, Kingston Festival provided blogTO with the same released shared on their Instagram page and this brief statement.

"Our security plans had to come into play as with the internal breach of patrons breaking down the V.I.P fence the police and security began implementing the plan as patrons started looting the bars and started damaging production equipment with the fences."

But what perhaps has fans most ticked off is the festival's decision to not refund ticket holders but to instead offer them a discount on their next event.

"We will be moving forward to compensate our loyal patrons by bringing the next festival indoors (inside of an arena) with a 50% off promo code," read the Instagram post.

This did not do well with some fans, who immediately took to social media to share their thoughts.

However - some fans did come to the festival's defence, placing blame on those who passed the fences and causing chaos. Others said they had a great time and were able to enjoy all the sets.

Some are unsure if there will be a future event.

We'll just have to wait and see if Kingston Fest will make a return next year. If they do, here's hoping it will be successful.

Lead photo by

@richforeternity


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