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Pukkelpop Music Festival to Return in 2012 Despite Stage Collapse

The Smith Westerns - P 2011
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The fest — which was to feature performances by Eminem, The Foo Fighters and Offspring — was canceled after five were killed in August.

COLOGNE, Germany – Pukkelpop, the Belgian music festival hit by tragedy this year when a sudden storm killed five people, will return in 2012. On the festival website organizers confirmed the 27th edition of the pop fest will be held August 16-18, 2012.

This year, the three-day Pukkelpop festival was cancelled after the first day, when sudden, torrential winds uprooted trees and tore down two of the festival stages as well as several speakers and projection screens. Bands that had been scheduled to play included Eminem, The Foo Fighters and The Offspring.

The storm has been ruled a natural disaster by the Belgium government, absolving festival organizers of any responsibility for the disaster. But on the festival website, organizers said Pukkelpop suffered “considerable financial losses” as a result of the storm and that the aftereffects of the tragedy “will weigh heavily on Pukkelpop, the festival as well as the organization, in the coming years.”

To partially compensate festival goers who bought tickets for the 2011 fest, organizers said they would be offering food and drink vouchers for future events. The vouchers, valued at $104 and $208 (€75, €150) can be cashed in at any of the next three Pukkelpop festivals.