BALLARAT looks set to lose another key tourist drawcard with news Rockabilly Beat Festival is pulling the pin on the popular festival.
The comments on their official Facebook page come when announcing that the festival, which brings Ballarat Central's Lydiard Street alive, has had its final swing for the foreseeable future.
The blow to Lydiard Street and CBD traders comes within months of a funding meltdown between Ballarat council and Visit Ballarat and in the week following the city was beaten in a bid for the Lost Trades Fair to be held here by Bendigo.
The Jazz Festival is another festival that will be missing from the summer calendar, while White Night is poised to make its last regional visit to Ballarat for at least three years.
On their facebook page the Rockabilly Beat Festival's organisers hinted at financial stress as a reason for the cancellation.
It noted that this year's Ballarat Beat Rockabilly Festival should not have gone ahead due to the "severe budgetary stress", according to the festival's organisers.
"We all absolutely loved the festival, and although we tried to find new sponsors, we have come up short by a significant amount," the post said.
"At this stage there can be no Ballarat Beat Festival going forward."
This year's event had a new format, with less dancing in the street than previous occasions, but there was still plenty of Rock N' Roll and the impressive pin-up competition among other fun attractions.
The news follows Ballarat losing The Lost Trades Fair, which expected to attract more than 20,000 people.
Organisers said this year's Rockabilly festival, which is a celebration of a culture from a time past, was a "last ditch effort to keep the festival alive and kicking".
"We also feel it is necessary to apologise for the 2019 festival which was under severe budgetary stress, and in hindsight should not have gone ahead."
Steph Montague, from Essex in the UK, said her Australian holiday this year was planned around the Ballarat Beat Rockabilly Festival.
"I feel for the organisers and regular attendees that 2019 is to be the last one," she said on Facebook.
The City of Ballarat doesn't want to close the door on the Rockabilly Beat Festival despite organisers calling it quits on the 2020 edition on Wednesday afternoon.
This evening, the City of Ballarat released a statement saying it hoped the event could be resurrected.
"City of Ballarat would like to express its disappointment at the news today that the 2020 Ballarat Beat Rockabilly Festival has been cancelled," the statement said.
"We appreciate the workload and cost of hosting such a large public event and thank The George Hotel and organisers for their efforts with the event.
"Recently City of Ballarat staff had been working with two event organisers with the knowledge that the event may be at risk, in the hope that they may join forces with The George Hotel to offer additional support.
"We will continue to offer support and assist organisers where possible to offer alternatives to ensure Ballarat's rockabilly tradition continues into the future."
RE-LIVE THIS YEAR'S FESTIVAL BELOW (IT MIGHT TAKE A MINUTE TO LOAD)
Organisers wanted to thank the community, the late Gary Browning, the George Hotel, Visit Ballarat (Ballarat Regional Tourism) and the City of Ballarat council for financial and other support.
City of Ballarat council has been contacted for comment.
"We hope that somehow, another festival is able to take its place on the annual calendar of Rockabilly Music," organisers said.
"Thank you all, and apologies to all who have already made plans to attend the planned 2020 festival."
SEE THE FULL POST FROM ORGANISERS BELOW
RE-LIVE THIS YEAR'S FESTIVAL
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