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Citizens show support after storm damage

All-day concert coming back in 2024 with Signal Hill headlining


Despite significant storm damage to event infrastructure, organizers of Hantsport’s popular summertime music festival already have their sights set on 2024.

Raye Myles, the president of the Hantsport Music Festival, held a meeting on Sept. 7 to explain the impact of the July storm and to give back to volunteers.

“We didn’t have a music festival this year. It was a rough weekend … with the storm, with the loss of life in the area. We got off very lucky. There’s people who will never recover from that weekend,” said Myles of the July 21-22 storm that dumped three months’ worth of rain in one day, resulting in flash floods throughout Hants County.

Festival volunteers had been at Foundry Field on the Friday night, ensuring everything was set up and ready to go for the annual outdoor fundraising concert. It looked perfect, Myles recalled.

And then the storm hit late

night. that

“We lost some of our infrastructure that night because of the heavy rains. We had tents collapse,” he said.

The board made the decision to cancel the Saturday festival. They announced the decision on Facebook, and almost immediately, some pre-sold ticket holders began requesting refunds.

Given that the festival doesn’t make money — it covers expenses and donates any profit to local charities — Myles responded on social media.

“Please keep in mind the fact that we are a not-forprofit group that is here to support the community,” Myles wrote on Facebook

July 22. “There are fixed costs associated with putting an event like this on — advertising, printing and other hard costs that we still need to pay. We lost $7,000 worth of tents last night that we will need to replace before the 2024 festival.”

After posting this information, it wasn’t long before the community rallied together to help the group.

One commenter on Facebook said they couldn’t attend this year so they didn’t buy a ticket but they’d “happily buy one now if it’s helpful.”

Another commenter said, “when we buy tickets to this event, we know that the after-expense money goes to charity. Cut and dry. That’s the deal. Mother Nature decided there will be no entertainment this year. Yeah, it sucks but it happens. We survived the storm.”

Myles told the crowd gathered at the Hantsport Memorial Community Centre (HMCC) Sept. 7 how moved he was by people pulling together to help support the cause.

“Within the next week, we had thousands of dollars sent to us,” said Myles. “People would just say, ‘this is what we planned on spending that day, here, take it.’ So, we were able to replace the damaged infrastructure, which came to over $7,000 by the time we replaced it.”

And, they were able to donate $5,580.15, split five ways, to Hantsport-area charities. Representatives from each organization were on hand Sept. 7 to receive $1,116.03.

The money went to the Hantsport and Area Community Food Bank, Hantsport and Area Historical Society,

Integrity Cheer Empire, HMCC, and Hantsport School.

Additionally, $200 was given to the Hantsport School that was raised during a July 1 bike run.


The first music festival was held in 2014. It was the brain child of Chris Cuvilier, Kevin Guptell and Fred Martin. That first year, Myles was a sponsor.

“It was to bring people home to celebrate Hantsport,” said Myles.

“Of course, we know what happened in 2015, with Hantsport no longer being a town. And that’s really what drove this in the beginning — (it) was to remind people that we’re still a community, and we’re still Hantsport. It’s the place we all grew up.”

With that in mind, 2024 marks the 10th anniversary of the first festival. Myles said the group is looking to get back to its roots. Organizers are hoping to market it as a homecoming — and encouraging people who moved away to make summer plans to come home for a visit.

“That first year we had people from every province in the country come home. We had somebody from Hawaii, we had people from Florida,” said Myles. “So, it really drew people that first year and it was a lot of fun.”

He’s hoping 2024 will capture that magic once more.

All but one band has been booked to play the July 27 concert. Signal Hill will be returning as the headliner.

“They’ve always been popular. They put on a great show. People like them,” said Myles.

After a brief break, the Hantsport Music Festival board will update the Facebook page and website to reflect the 2024 event and more details will be made public. Going forward, Myles said the music festival will be held on the fourth Saturday in July so as to not interfere with another Hants County music festival on Kempt Shore.

Myles is hopeful that in 2024, the show won’t be cancelled due to weather or illness (like it was during COVID).

“Hopefully next year Mother Nature finally agrees to work with us.”


For more information on the 2024 Hantsport Music Festival, visit or follow them on Facebook.





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