It’s going to be a quiet summer.
As the plug continues to be pulled on marquee tours and festivals, Capitol Hill Block Party has become the latest Seattle event to throw the towel in on 2020. Organizers announced Thursday that the mid-summer classic will not take place this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic — hardly an unexpected move but one that feels like a nail in the local festival-season coffin.
“We hope everyone is being smart, responsible and thinking of others during these unprecedented times,” organizers wrote in the announcement.
Organizers plan to resume the long-running music fest that attracts around 10,000 fans per day July 23-25, 2021. While this year’s lineup announcement had been delayed as the pandemic cast uncertainty over the summer concert season, early-bird tickets sold will be honored for the 2021 edition. Fans seeking a refund are encouraged to contact Eventbrite, the ticket broker that reportedly laid off 45% of its staff as the concert industry has been rocked by the coronavirus and social distancing orders.
Capitol Hill Block Party joins Northwest Folklife Festival and THING in Port Townsend as the latest local fests to be postponed or canceled. Out at the Gorge Amphitheatre, a number of high-profile concerts and festivals — including a June 6 date with Brandi Carlile, who honored the late great John Prine on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” Wednesday night — are still on the books, although it’s hard to envision them proceeding at this point.
Last week, a newly formed coalition of local music venues warned that without more financial help, a number of clubs would close permanently during the coronavirus shutdown. As tours are typically booked six to nine months in advance, venue operators behind the Washington Nightlife Music Association say that once stay-at-home orders lift, it will take them longer than bars and restaurants to return business to normal levels, as the live entertainment industry recovers.