Fort Smith’s South Slave Friendship Festival, which attracts musicians and visitors to the N.W.T. community every summer, has been cancelled this year.
"It’s a choice of either having a small, pared-down festival with very few outside performers invited or postpone the whole thing until next year," said George Kurzewski, one of the festival organizers.
The problems began in January 2012 when a fire destroyed a building at Conibear Park, where the festival’s outdoor performances are held.
Then in May, a fire damaged the community’s arena. The festival’s dance at the arena normally brings in the biggest revenue to help fund the weekend.
Musician Randy Sibbeston has performed at the festival in the past.
"It’s always been a great festival every year," he said. "It’s a blow to the N.W.T. music community."
Kurzewski said the hiatus will give them extra time to organize a special event to celebrate the festival’s 25th anniversary next summer.