Woodstock organizer blasts ‘shortsighted partners’ who ‘don’t have a right to cancel it’

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(WBNG) — Michael Lang, co-founder of Woodstock ’69 and organizer of the 50th anniversary celebration slated to take place in Watkins Glen this August, emailed a letter on Tuesday to those who subscribe to Woodstock 50 News.

The letter from Lang came one day after financial partner Dentsu-Aegis pulled its funding from the festival.

While speaking to reporters on Monday, Schuyler County Administrator Tim O’Hearn said Dentsu contacted his office.

“Late this morning I was contacted by representatives from Dentsu who indicated that, for reasons known to them, they were going to be canceling the Woodstock 50 event scheduled for this August,” O’Hearn said.

“We have yet to understand why they [Dentsu] would try to prevent the festival from happening by seemingly undermining us in this way. It is one thing to decide for oneself that it is best to move on, but it is entirely another thing to try and close the door on us,” Lang wrote in Tuesday’s letter.

O’Hearn’s office would not comment when asked for an update on Tuesday.

The full text of Lang’s letter can be viewed below.

Dear Woodstock Friends

It seems in a way that history is repeating itself. In July of 1969 we lost our site in Walkill and with only a month to go we managed to move to Bethel. Woodstock was going to happen no matter what!

This time around, Woodstock’s new hometown, Dix & Watkins Glen, NY and New York State have been really wonderful. I went door to door to talk to the neighbors. Some remembered Summer Jam back in ’73 and were worried about history repeating itself. But they opened their doors to us and we talked it out. Many of those people have reached out over the last 24 hours with messages of hope and encouragement.
The venue, Watkins Glen International, have been totally supportive and professional.

Yesterday, our financial partner, Dentsu-Aegis, made the decision to pull out and informed us that they were cancelling the festival at the same time they let the press release go public.
We have yet to understand why they would try to prevent the festival from happening by seemingly undermining us in this way. It is one thing to decide for oneself that it is best to move on, but it is entirely another thing to try and close the door on us.

Yesterday, I couldn’t help but relive that moment 50 years ago – it was “ déjà vu all over again”!
Supporting the principles of activism and sustainability are too important to be derailed by shortsighted partners.
We continue our work with NYS, Schuyler County and various parties to keep things on track.

Woodstock never belonged to Dentsu, so they don’t have a right to cancel it.
Woodstock belongs to the people and it always will.
We don’t give up and Woodstock 50 will take place and will be a blast!

Thanks for Listening, Michael

WBNG Staff

WBNG Staff

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