By Tara Vreeland and NewsOn6.com
TULSA, OK -- Dfest organizers announced Friday they are pulling the plug on the popular music festival -- at least for this year.
The music festival was becoming bigger every July and more well known in the national music scene.
This would have been the 9th year for the summer event, but in a statement Friday morning, Dfest's creators announced the festival is on hiatus.
In 2009, the music festival featured 160 artists. Organizers say the event had never been more popular and the buzz was spreading.
"When we mentioned Dfest to them they were like, 'Oh yeah, we heard about that festival last year. It's supposed to be a really cool festival.' It seemed like it was just getting into the national radar of the big festivals that really matter," said Danny Chaimson, musician.
Dfest team organizers Tom and Angie Green said, "We found ourselves faced with the reality that we are not exempt from this economy and since costs to produce the festival were rising in spite of the economic downturn, it would have been impossible to produce the event financially this year."
They also say a decline in corporate sponsorships and support were another reason to pause.
"I mean, that's kind of the fuel that makes the machine run. You gotta have money to do it, a show of this magnitude," said Jeff Richardson, Hard Work Records.
Musician Jeff Richardson says the Tulsa music scene is shocked by the cancellation.
"It has nothing to do with lack of interest or lack of showing up, nothing to do with that. I've been there. I've seen it. Tens of thousands or people every year and it seems to keep growing, so it's not for lack of popularity, that's for sure," said Richardson.
The Dfest team says they are hopeful for the festival's future. They say they are exploring all of the options to get back on track for 2011.
The statement from Tom and Angie Green includes the following:
"In 2010, we have to make the difficult decision to put Dfest on hiatus. A tough economy, rising production costs and a decline in lower level corporate sponsorships and support have caused us to take pause. These factors have made us unable to produce the kind of event we are known for, so we are unable to move forward with the festival this year. At the point we knew that we had exhausted any and all options and head into July 2010 with full steam, we decided to postpone the event on our own terms."
State Farm Insurance, the major sponsor for the event, also issued a statement:
"On behalf of all agents and associates at State Farm Insurance, we regret the news that Dfest will not take place this summer in Tulsa. State Farm has a long tradition of giving back to the community and supporting events such as Dfest.
This event allowed us to support an event that thousands of people enjoyed and gave us a great vehicle to promote our products and services to our youthful market customers. We worked tirelessly with Dfest organizers in an effort to make Dfest a reality this year.
We committed significant resources to ensure success of this event, but it became clear over the last several weeks that it is not going to be possible to do so.
Our sponsorship in 2009 was a great success and we appreciate all the support and kind words from our customers and the Tulsa community in being the title sponsor for Dfest in 2009. We take great pride in being the number one insurer of homes and autos in Oklahoma, as well as nationally, and will continue to look for opportunities to promote our brand in this great state," Rendi Black, State Farm Vice President.
This year's Dfest had been scheduled for July 30 and 31st in downtown Tulsa.