[Cancelled] By Alex Berryhill, Westword | The ARISE Music Festival is no stranger to tumultuous situations. A little over two years ago, it split with Sunrise Ranch, the sprawling, 400-acre compound run by Emissaries of Divine Light, after two of its founders, Tierro Lee and Paul Bassis, departed from the project, leaving it in the hands of event producer Luke Comer. With the pandemic looming, this left the festival’s future up in the air.

However, ARISE regrouped and purchased a 1,000-acre organic farm in Boone. Here, Comer promised to provide a world-class, transcendental experience. “Because ARISE owns the property,” he stated at the time, “we are able to master plan for our future — to create, over time, a festival that is functional, innovative and beautiful, and that provides our patrons with one of the most epic and uplifting experiences on earth. For this and other reasons, we are calling our new home ‘The Cradle.’”

The Cradle seemed like an upgrade from the previous location, with more space, less dust, and shade, things that the previous Loveland location struggled with. But two weeks before the festival was set to premiere in its new location this Memorial Day weekend, the Pueblo County Planning Department canceled its special event application for unknown reasons, according to the festival’s organizers. Now the event is canceled permanently.
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COMBO Editor: I can tell you one reason for cancelling it: The traffic would be a nightmare for the county. Nice roads but only 2-lanes, no shoulders in many areas, and only a couple of roads in & out. If you went to the Riot Fest at the May Farms in Bennett a few years back, you’ll know just what I’m talking about. I worked with a singer/songwriter who lived in Boone [Shout out to Kelly Hershey!]. Nice little community but they wouldn’t be able to handle a crowd of 1,000 let alone to mention maybe 20,000. Doesn’t even mention the small Sheriff’s Dept. in Pueblo County.

[Thanks to Alex Teitz for contributing this article! http://www.femmusic.com]

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