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OUR VIEW: Sweetland makes the right call

This past weekend Sweetland Amphitheatre made the inevitable a reality, canceling the venue’s entire 2020 concert year.

Several times this year Sweetland made the difficult decision to postpone and reschedule concerts, and like the rest of us, organizers hoped for the best.  Unfortunately, at this point, it’s clear that COVID-19 isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, making it impossible to safely hold a concert.

When the lineup was first announced in February, there was a lot of excitement. Styx, American Idol winner Fantasia, For King and Country, Emmylou Harris, Amy Grant and Travis Tritt were among the big names set to perform. 

Unfortunately, COVID-19 hit in mid-March, just a few weeks before Black Jacket Symphony was supposed to return to the stage in LaGrange.

The group had become a signature in the Sweetland Summer Series each year. 

It’s unclear at this point what the financial ramifications are for the amphitheatre, or if any of the acts scheduled will be able to return at some point in the future.

But none of that matters at this second.

Most importantly, Sweetland Amphitheatre made the right decision by canceling this year’s concerts. It would’ve been impossible to have a full-capacity concert safely in 2020, and a reduced-capacity crowd probably never made sense at Sweetland due to the costs to operate the venue and all of the fees associated with producing a concert.

One day, we’ll all be back at Sweetland. We’ll be surrounded by family and friends, listening to great music under a setting sun.

The local concerts have become a signature LaGrange moment each summer — one many look forward to.

We can’t wait until that day.