Low ticket sales spike booze-focused festival set to happen in Cloverdale next week

The Grape & The Grain event was scheduled for May 28-29

The organizing team for The Grape & The Grain festival includes (from left to right) Lori Potts

CLOVERDALE — A two-day festival devoted to wine, beer and spirits has been put on hold.

The inaugural The Grape & The Grain event was set to take place outdoors on the weekend of May 28-29 at Bill Reid Millennium Amphitheatre, at Cloverdale Fairgrounds.

Event planners with Phoenix Productions aimed to attract 10,000 people to the festival with a wide selection of adult beverages, food and live music.

But that’s all been postponed, according to Amy Jones, manager of strategic marketing and communications with Karran Finlay Marketing.

“I wanted to let you know that the event producers made the tough decision to postpone The Grape & The Grain festival to a later date due to low ticket sales,” Jones wrote in an email to the Now this morning (May 18).

“The decision was just made this morning.… An exact date is yet to be determined, but will be announced when it is. All tickets sold thus far are being refunded immediately and the event producers are communicating directly with all vendors, musicians and suppliers regarding the postponement.

“We sincerely apologize for the postponement but feel it is the best decision in order to create a positive festival experience for vendors and patrons.”

In an interview last month, Paulette Garneau, a co-producer of the festival, said the goal is to make The Grape & The Grain an annual event.

“We’re trying to highlight the spirits, mainly,” Garneau told the Now for a story posted on April 26. “There are a great deal of new distillers in B.C. and a lot of them are small, so we’re highlighting a lot of what’s being done locally, and craft beers and wineries, too.

Festival admission was priced at $55 for the Saturday, $45 for Sunday, $75 for a weekend pass and $95 for a Sunday brunch.

Last October, Phoenix Productions staged an Oktoberfest event at the Agriplex that didn’t go as well as the company had hoped. Attendance was soft, and a shuttle service wasn’t well used, Garneau said.

CLICK HERE to be taken to the festival website.


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