Vancouver beer and music festival blames staff shortage and faulty wrist band tech for lineups – BC

A Vancouver festival is blaming staff shortages and new technology for lines that stretched for hours on Saturday afternoon.

Thousands of people were forced to wait, trying to enter the Vancouver Craft Beer and Music Festival at the PNE.

One Vancouver resident, who tried to get into the festival with a friend, said the whole experience “was a joke”. They ended up leaving the lineup to go to East Vancouver breweries instead.

“The whole thing felt like organizers didn’t care about the event, they just cared about selling tickets and making money,” said Kevin MacDonald, a Vancouver resident. “It was pretty much a joke and we just lost $60 each.”

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Festival organizers issued a statement Sunday, blaming staff shortages and a tech issue with wristbands, for the long lineups, refuting the notion that the event was oversold.

“As seasoned event producers, we had prepared in case issues arose but we faced unprecedented and unfortunate staffing shortages, which significantly affected the entry lineups,” wrote VCBW staff, in a social media post.

“We also faced challenges with the new wristband system.”

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MacDonald believes the event was oversold, contrary to what organizers said.

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“I would say, there were about 2,000 people trying to get in,” MacDonald said.

“They could have had 100 staff at the entrance. People were not getting in. There was one gate, one entrance. Just picture trying to get into a Canucks game with one entrance.”

In the festival’s statement, it does not say if it will be compensating those that did not get into the event.

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