Atlanta’s Music Midtown Fest canceled due to Georgia gun laws

Georgia gun laws are responsible for the cancellation of the Music Midtown 2022 festival in Atlanta, Georgia.

On Monday, Live Nation announced that the festival – which was due to take place in September – had been canceled, stating only: “[D]Due to circumstances beyond our control, Music Midtown will no longer take place this year. We look forward to seeing each other again in September and hope that we can enjoy the festival together again soon.

Although Live Nation has not officially given a reason for the cancellation, sources who have worked with the festival have confirmed rolling stone that Georgia’s gun laws were to blame. Since 2011, Music Midtown has taken place at Piedmont Park in Atlanta, and the parks are among the various public spaces in Georgia where the carrying of weapons is permitted. The festival, as a temporary user of the park, does not have the capacity to cancel this law and apply its own prohibition. (The festival website said “weapons or explosives of any kind” are prohibited.)

Atlanta-based journalist George Chidi was the first to report the likelihood of Music Midtown being canceled due to gun laws. “I understand it’s because Georgia’s gun laws make it impossible to ban guns from Piedmont Park, a requirement of many entertainer gig riders,” he said. wrote on Twitter last Friday, July 29.

According to Atlanta news outlet SaportaReport, Music Midtown’s gun ban was unofficially challenged in May by Phillip Evans, a gun rights advocate in the state. The previous month, Evans had actually lost a lawsuit against the Atlanta Botanical Garden over its right to ban firearms from its property. Evans first issued the challenge in 2014, shortly after then-Governor Nathan Deal signed new state legislation — known as the “Weapons” bill. fire everywhere” – which extended to where guns were allowed throughout the state.

Despite this expansion, Evans ultimately lost his case against the Botanic Garden, as the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that the garden’s ban was valid since he was leasing his property long-term to the city of Atlanta. But because that ruling did not speak to short-term tenants of public property – such as Music Midtown – Evans argued he would likely prevail in a similar case against the festival.

Although Evans never sued, he demanded that Music Midtown lift its gun ban. He also reportedly sent written complaints about it to Live Nation and the festival’s security company just last month.

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