The annual music festival in the Westman Islands, Þjóðhátíð, is requesting funding from the state following its postponement among tighter COVID restrictions.
The music festival represents a large source of income for the entire island community. In a recent statement to RÚV, Hörður Orri Grettisson, the festival committee chairman, gave the estimated loss as 800 to 900 million ISK. “It is absolutely 100% that the company needs help if it is to survive this,” he said to RÚV.
In addition to the income for accommodations, restaurants, and transportation, the festival also funds some 60 to 70% of ÍBV, the Westman Island’s sports clubs. Especially impacted are the youth leagues and activities.
The festival received no state support last year, but Hörður states that the club had more time to think of alternate sources of income. With the sudden postponement this year, the community is more likely to be affected.
Íris Róbertsdóttir, mayor of the Westman Islands, states that “the state did not get involved in this last year and I think it is natural for the company to have that conversation with the state, as the situation is completely different than it was then.”
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