Home Arts & Entertainment Grand Rapids Breakaway music festival ends with a whimper after rain delay

Grand Rapids Breakaway music festival ends with a whimper after rain delay

DJ Snake at Breakaway Music Festival 2022. (Photo courtesy of Kaden Grooters).

By Kevin Lopez

Expectations were high headed into the Breakaway music festival as many popular artists were scheduled to rock the stage and make everyone dance the night away.

Day one of Breakaway featured rising star Yung Gravy, popular DJs Two Friends and the main event of the evening The Chainsmokers playing all their hits for the crowd.

The day was considered a success among festival goers as Silent Disco was filled with people and the weather was perfect for Friday evening.

Unfortunately, day two of the event was mired in mixed feelings as a weather delay caused festival goers to be evacuated for safety.

Many were waiting for an update from the Breakaway social media page and there was an uproar on social media concerning how communication about the delay was handled.

There were reports of rude staff and a lack of communication on whether or not the event was to even continue that caused many to leave the festival.

Bobby Souriyasak, 27, of Holland, was understanding about the weather delay complications.

“They had to do it for everyone’s safety, so I can understand the staff being stressed and tense with people,” Souriyasak said. “They let us back in for the final act which was good.”

The Collegiate reached out to Breakaway organizers for a comment and did not get a response. 

After a two-hour delay, the festival was reopened, but was again shut down for safety issues. Because of this, some artists didn’t perform or were cut short due to the event’s scheduled 11 p.m. ending. 

The event eventually re-opened at 9:30 p.m. for those who were still there and many were upset that the artist, Oliver Tree, ended up being cut out of the event.

The popular alternative rock artist was set to perform before DJ Snake, the main event of the night, but because of the weather delay he couldn’t perform.

Kaden Grooters, 21, of Kentwood, was outraged with how everything ended.

“I came here for Oliver Tree and the fact that there was enough time for him to perform and Oliver wanted to perform, but they wouldn’t let him,” he said. “We weren’t even sure if DJ Snake was gonna perform and instead they had the host advertise all the stuff on sale, when we clearly wanted to see Oliver perform, is just ridiculous.”

This year’s event started off with a bang and ended with a whimper. It’ll be interesting to see if Breakaway will look to implement changes to their protocol as many look forward to next year.

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