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Lightning claims another festival scalp

Danny Wimmer Presents' Houston Open Air was the latest festival to fall fell prey to the threat of lightning last weekend

By IQ on 27 Sep 2016

Avenged Sevenfold, Houston Open Air, White Oak show

image © Avenged Sevenfold

The storm-hit 2016 festival season claimed another victim last weekend in the form of metal festival Houston Open Air in Texas.

On Saturday afternoon the festival site, in the 350-acre NRG Park in Houston, was evacuated due to concerts over lightning, with festivalgoers told to take shelter at the nearby NRG Center (80,000-cap.) stadium or in their cars. The festival resumed later, albeit without a number of acts, including Anthrax and Sevendust.

Sunday was called off altogether, with a statement from the festival reading: “The forecast calls for lightning in the immediate area on and off all day, making it unsafe to human life to reopen the festival”.

“If we were fly-by-night promoters and wanted to roll the dice and take our chances, I could have been calling you guys this morning having a completely different conversation”

Due to headline on Sunday were Avenged Sevenfold and Deftones, the former of whom played an indoor show at the White Oak (1,500-cap.) instead:

Festival booker Gary Spivack, of Danny Wimmer Presents, told local radio station 94.5 The Buzz: “We can all handle the rain but when there is lightning and wind it becomes more difficult. […] God forbid there is a lot of electricity rolling around at a festival.

“If we were fly-by-night promoters and wanted to roll the dice and take our chances, I could have been calling you guys this morning having a completely different conversation.”

 


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