News Flash

Pittsylvania County Homepage News

Posted on: October 29, 2021

Setting the Record Straight on the Blue Ridge Rock Festival

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To clarify misinformation about the County's relationship with Purpose Driven Events and what happened at the Blue Ridge Rock Fest, the County is publishing a two-part series about what happened at the Blue Ridge Rock Festival and why the Blue Ridge Country Festival was postponed.

Here is a short summary of the interview: 

  • The plans for the Blue Ridge Rock Festival were good, but they were not administered correctly. There were serious public safety risks Wednesday and Thursday due to failures in traffic management, transportation, camping, sanitation, and other areas.
  • In front of many other regulatory agencies, Purpose Driven Events directly requested that Pittsylvania County take over external operations of the festival. 
  • Purpose Driven Events signed contracts with Danville Public Schools and Pittsylvania County Public Schools for transportation services. 
  • No County employees received two paychecks for working to the direct benefit of Purpose Driven Events. Off-duty professionals (including bus drivers, public safety staff, and Sheriff's deputies, for example) were compensated for their time, but were not paid as County employees. 
  • To this day, the promoter still has not been able to provide an accurate head count for the Blue Ridge Rock Festival. 
  • Based on complaints and comments by the promoter and vendors, as well as the promoter's difficulty in securing a bond, the County had legitimate concerns about collection of monies owed.

You can read the full transcript of this interview with County Administrator David Smitherman. 

You can also read this narrative-style recap of what happened during the Blue Rock Festival. 

Be sure to tune in next week for an in-depth look at why the Blue Ridge Country Festival was postponed. 

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