It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Suwannee Hulaween 2021 Music Festival and the Late Covid Requirement Debacle

page: 1

log in


posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 12:04 PM
Here’s the big question. Is it wrong to sell something under an original set of terms, one of them being “all sales are final”, then much later on enforce additional requirements in order for customers to receive what they bought? Then, what if those requirements are physically invasive while also being an invasion of privacy? What if the seller doesn’t plan on issuing, or doesn’t issue refunds to their customers who disagree with this change of terms, or others they turn away, some of which may be perfectly healthy? Is Covid-19 or the vaccine agenda really an excuse for this type of business behavior?

Suwannee Hulaween Music festival is one of the top 10 camping music festivals in the US and arguably one of the top 5. The festival is held once a year around Halloween in the 800-acre music park and campground on the historic banks of the Suwannee River, The Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, in Live Oak, Florida. It is hosted by the band The String Cheese Incident, who typically play 3 sets a day throughout the festival. Around 20,000 music lovers gather for 4 days and 3 nights of 5 stages of a variety of live music, Spirit Lake, all sorts of art installations, entertainers, vendors, a Ferris wheel, lasers, lights, projections, flames, costumes, great vibes, the unknown, and of course camping with friends and fam. With all that Suwannee Hulaween has to offer, it’s no surprise that attendees will fork up close to $400 to $500 just for a 3 or 4 day general admission ticket, with primitive camping pass, and some will even travel across the country to attend.

With much talk about whether or not Suwannee Hulaween would make Covid requirements or if the event would even take place this year, they decided to go ahead and schedule the event without any Covid testing or vaccination requirements. Instead, attendees had to sign a Covid Wavier agreeing to attend at their own risk, and to not come if they are not feeling well, have Covid, or have had Covid in the last 14 days. Tickets quickly sold-out and everyone who purchased tickets signed the Covid Wavier or had someone sign it for them. In early fall, the Thursday schedule was released and it was announced that one of the headliners, Zeds Dead, would be headlining Thursday night. Festival goers with only a 3 day pass, that really wanted to see Zeds Dead, were now faced with making the decision of spending another $100 and going for an extra day, or not.

It wasn’t until two and a half weeks before the event that we were notified, in what seemed to be an attempt to undermine and subvert Florida law, that Hulaween HQ takes Covid seriously and that new Covid requirements were in place for entering the event. Now, ticket holders will have to show proof at the gate of either Covid vaccination or a negative PCR test from a pharmacy within 72 hours of the event. A third party app called Bindle is being used to help speed up the entry process. Bindle collects people’s vaccination information or negative PCR tests and creates a health pass. There’s no consideration being taken for natural immunity, and no mention of any refunds for anyone. I saw this the morning of 0ct. 12th, and sent an angry email as a way to express my frustration. I was fortunate to have Paul Levine, one of the owners of Suwannee Hulaween, promptly call me back for what turned out to be a very candid conversation.

He said that they were concerned about people’s health and safety, asked me why I was upset, why I didn’t trust vaccines when they had been proven for a hundred years, and why I couldn’t just go get the PCR test at CVS for free. I told him that I felt that they had breached our contract by insisting on additional requirements after having sold the tickets and everyone having agreed to the original Covid Waiver. I told him that I felt like this was not only a breach of contract, but a violation of people’s rights and privacies. I told him that I trusted the old vaccines that have proven themselves over the decades, as opposed to the months, that these new vaccine technologies have had to prove themselves (with unimpressive results, I will add) that I had lost faith in the current medical industry, that “My understanding is that natural immunity is more effective, and broad-spectrum, than artificial immunity,” and that he may actually be encouraging people to hurt themselves by giving up their natural immunity in order to go to this festival. I then said that I don’t want to have to stick a PCR test up my nose. “Those things are not cotton on the end, but instead they have micro tubes filled with chemicals, some of which get left behind, and I considered that an invasion of my body”. He said that “usually people who go to Hulaween, don’t care what goes up their noses.” I told him that I don’t care about what other people stick up their noses, he has no right to tell me or anyone else what we need to do to with our bodies. When I asked for a refund, I was encouraged to try to sell my tickets. I said that that wasn’t my responsibility and that I was seeking a full refund or I would see them in court. I was told, “Good luck. You will be suing ETix, a billion dollar company.” The thing is, ETix, a third party ticketing agency, didn’t make the decision to breach the contract, Hula Holdings, LLC, did as far as I can tell. When I asked if they would be making refunds for people they turn away, I was told that they hadn’t figured all that out yet. I encouraged him to figure it out soon.

Since then, I wrote a second request for a full refund for breach of contract, on Oct. 18th and emailed it to the Hula Administration. In that letter, I encouraged them to do the right thing with regards to their customers, and if they didn’t, that I would be checking with the state of Florida as to if any laws had been broken. I received an email that day saying that they needed a bit more time to get things finished and thanked me for my patience. On Oct. 20th, Suwannee Hulaween added a Covid FAQS to their website to address some of the questions they received. Some of the updates they made include: stating that “proof of vaccination is not required”, “you do not have to use the Bindle app”, and you can bring original paper proof of vaccination or negative test. Earlier, there was a statement that children under 12 did not have to show proof of vaccination or negative PCR test, but that has been removed. Another thing that was removed is that people who have Covid at the time of the event were told to email Suwannee Hulaween administration. Now there is a more general statement that says that anyone with questions or concerns about their Covid policy, should contact them by email. Toward the end it states, “as always, entry requirements are subject to change.” If I had read that when I was thinking about purchasing my tickets, or if I had any indication that these extra requirements would be made, I would not have bought tickets this year. The last time I contacted Suwannee Hulaween to inquire about a refund and their refund plans was on Thurday, Oct 21nd, one week from the event. The reply that I got back the same day was, “We are hoping to have things worked out before the end of the week. I’m doing all I can to get things going as quickly as possible.” As far as I know, It’s the Sunday before the event and “things” still aren’t “worked out.”

edit on 24-10-2021 by IndieA because: added Continued...

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 12:05 PM
So with Suwannee music festival now only days away, the question remains as to whether or not Hula Holdings, LLC will provide refunds for people who feel that the original contract has been breached, or for those that will be turned away for various Covid requirement reasons, whether they are sick or not. This could all have been avoided by simply doing what Sea World did the summer of 2020 - contactless temperature checking upon entry. And, this policy could have easily been announced from the start and customers informed about it before they make their purchase. Instead, besides the issues I already brought up, now we have a scenario where all of the unvaccinated attendees will all be going to pharmacies, where they will likely encounter sick people, all within 3 days of the event, and having vaccinated people that could be sick or even have Covid, getting into the event without issue. This is some terrible decision making in my opinion, but I honestly hope that it all works out okay for everyone involved.

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 12:53 PM

originally posted by: IndieA
now we have a scenario where all of the unvaccinated attendees will all be going to pharmacies, where they will likely encounter sick people, all within 3 days of the event,

that aspect of this hadn't crossed my mind. Wow, common sense says you will likely infect more than you would save with a policy like that. I don't go to the pharmacy unless I feel like sh!t and need some mucinexD to dry me out. I send my wife if I can, but she has been around me being sick by the time she goes, so who knows how much love is spread around. thanks for sharing this story. My in-laws just moved from Live Oak. If I'd have known about this festival, I'd have gone in years past.

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 03:21 PM
It's an amazing festival in a beautiful campground and I have had so many changes fun in years pass.
Here's a promotional video from a few years ago, so people can see what this music festival is all about.

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 04:06 PM
Until and unless the public starts boycotting this overreaching BS TPTB will continue their overreaching BS

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 05:06 PM
a reply to: IndieA

I experienced something somewhat similar this year at the 4848 festival... not at all close to the extreme of what you are detailing but, it definitely felt like we were mislead or flat out lied to😡

I bought VIP tickets with a fantastic room! The balcony overlooked the area of one of the main stages about 3 months in advance. I splurged ALOT bc I didn’t go on vacation and I hadn’t been to a show in awhile. I’ve never spent that much money EVER on a festival bc I actually enjoy the minimalist camping experience lol.

So, even though I checked on all updated information up until the night before, when I arrived, they asked for proof of vaccination!!!! I honestly thought the guy was joking at first.

Nope! He was dead serious!

Their ONLY solution was that I take a test right there, wait for the results and if negative, then I could go enjoy the very expensive weekend I had already paid for( no refunds of course)😡

This is how stupid it was.... they handed me the kit, told me how to swab it myself and what to do with the swab and kit when done 😳 I kid you not!

I’ll spare the rest of the details because it all worked out great in the end but it just felt very deceptive on their part to do that and it nearly caused me to have a massive public meltdown that might have made me notoriously famous online lol

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 07:51 PM
I've never attended Hulaween, but my connection is the golf cart I purchased about 4-5 months ago. It had several Hulaween decals on it, and all access type decals on the steering column. I'm assuming the previous owner used it on site to shuttle attendees or merchandise. I only found out about this event by researching what these decals meant that were on the cart.

I'm not sure that the event would be something "up my alley" so to speak, but it's rather coincidental that you brought it up after I just had researched this a few months ago!

posted on Oct, 24 2021 @ 07:58 PM

As I was releasing this article to various press outlets, this Sunday evening, I received an email from the Hulaween Administration saying that they are sorry I can't make it. They provided a link to a refund request form and said that they would process the refund after the event.

I thanked them, hoped that there are no more complications and that the event runs smoothly, and wished them the best.

Time will tell if they come through with the refund or not. ETix has to process it, and they don't have the best reputation with their customers right now. They also have awful customer service.

We'll also have to wait and see what happens with the people who get turned away for these new Covid requirements. As of right now, it sounds like the promoters plan to do the right thing and issue refunds to them.

posted on Nov, 13 2021 @ 04:23 PM
Update and Follow-up:


It wasn't easy, but in this case it literally paid to stand up for my rights, privacy, and my rights under basic contract law.

Some other things that happened along the way:

1. The initial Covid requirement called for either full vaccination or TWO negative PCR tests, from a pharmacy, within 72 hours of the event. This was changed to requiring ONE negative PCR test, from a pharmacy, within 72 hours of the event.

2. An exemption was made for those 12 and under.

3. The Bindle app was encouraged but not made mandatory. Paper prove of vaccination or negative PCR test were excepted.

4.Those that tested positive before the event were told to email support.

5. I was given a refund for claiming a breach of contract. I believe others were given refunds or roll-overs for various late Covid requirement reasons. I was told of an approved refund list, so I am assuming that I was not the only person to get one.

6. I was able to constructively address a lot of anger and I feel a lot better now.

new topics


log in