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The Polish festival debuted Covid procedures, a new location, and a hybrid format for the 27th edition, which drew 20,000 festivalgoers
By IQ on 18 Aug 2021
Pol’and’Rock says it has “introduced a blueprint for holding events in the new normal,” following the successful 27th edition of the Polish festival.
The festival, which took place exclusively online last year, made its in-person return between 29–31 July at a brand new location, Makowice airfield.
Typically, Pol’and’Rock attracts an audience of almost half a million people each year but this year organisers were forced to whittle down the attendance to 20,000 domestic and international visitors.
Despite the festival’s reduced size, organisers said this year’s edition required a “massive logistical undertaking” due to on-site testing procedures for staff, artists and participants.
According to organisers, Pol’and’Rock were the only event in Poland that introduced the additional Covid-19 safety measure of rapid testing in addition to the requirement of vaccination certificates, which Poland has been quick to implement.
“It seems that our festival played an important role in promoting vaccination among the young people”
Tests were charged to participants at a cost of 49 Polish zlotys, the equivalent of a little more than €10. Otherwise, the festival remained free.
“We have not yet witnessed any increase in infections following the event,” says Pol’and’Rock’s Olga Zawada. “Even though we were faced with a wave of criticism from organized groups of anti-vaxxer trolls, it seems that our festival played an important role in promoting vaccination among the young people, who otherwise were reluctant to look into it.”
Other Covid-19 safety measures included the requirement of masks during concerts and, for the first time, the event was ticketed in order to control the flow of visitors.
Fans who couldn’t attend in person were able to watch the festival online for free.
The festival – also known as the ‘Woodstock of Poland’ – featured performances from international artists, as well as talks and workshops from social activists, artists, media personalities, sportspeople and NGOs.
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