Thousands of revelers had their fun cut short in Hilvarenbeek, Netherlands this weekend. Awakenings was forced to cancel festivities on Sunday, the third and final day of its summer festival, due to hail and lightning strikes.
DJ Mag reports that the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute issued forecasts of severe weather. They warned of 2-4 cm hail, lightning strikes, falling trees, and flying objects. Organizers of Awakenings decided to call off the event at 11:30 AM, issuing statements to that effect shortly thereafter.
“This decision is made with a heavy heart, but it has become necessary due to severe weather conditions heading our way later today,” reads their post. “Our utmost concern is ensuring your safety on site, and under these circumstances, we cannot guarantee this.”
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Awakenings has yet to share how it will reimburse Sunday ticket holders. Solutions look to be coming soon, however. “Within the span of a week, we will reach out to you directly, providing details regarding suitable solutions.”
In a subsequent statement, organizers revealed that the grounds had been safely evacuated. “We are grateful to report that everyone is out of harm’s way. The most severe part of the storm has subsided. We remain pleased our decision, as we cannot take any risks when it comes to the safety and well-being of our visitors.”
Awakenings is a brand encompassing numerous events in the Netherlands and beyond — all focused on techno. Gatherings were first organized under the name in 1997 by Rocco Veenboer. Over the years, it has billed artists like Jeff Mills, Adam Beyer, Amelie Lens, Joris Voorn, and Sven Väth.
Outside of 2023, Awakenings was only forced to cancel once during the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020. It was replaced with a livestream event filmed at the Gashouder — meaning gas holder — in Amsterdam.
Find the most up-to-date info on the Awakenings website.