The 27th annual Austin Reggae Festival has been cancelled in accordance with city officials’ prohibition on public gatherings of more than 250 people amid the coronavirus pandemic, festival organizers announced Monday afternoon.


The event, a fundraiser for the Central Texas Food Bank, had been scheduled for April 17-19 at Auditorium Shores. Those who bought advance tickets will receive full refunds via ticketing agency Eventbrite, according to a statement from the festival, with refunds returning to the credit card of the purchaser.


More from the organizers’ press release:


The festival has raised up to $200,000 per year to help fight hunger in Central Texas and will create a significant revenue shortfall for the Food Bank at a time when the organization is strapped for resources as a result of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.


"The Austin Reggae Festival is a great Austin tradition that has been incredibly generous to the Food Bank for decades," said Derrick Chubbs, President and CEO of the Central Texas Food Bank. "Even if we weren’t in a pandemic situation, a loss like this would be devastating for us. It’s made even worse at this time because of the extraordinary measures we’re taking to keep feeding those in need — a number that is bound to increase as more people find themselves unable to work or staying home to take care of loved ones."


"Over the last ten years, the event has raised more than $1,000,000 for the Food Bank, which is equivalent to four million meals," said festival producer Pat Costigan. "We’re saddened by the need to cancel this year’s festival, but look forward to continuing our support of the Food Bank by coming back better than ever with Austin Reggae Festival 2021."


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