Guy Fieri’s inaugural Flavortown Festival has been canceled

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The inaugural Flavortown Festival, a weekend-long Ohio event spearheaded by celebrity chef Guy Fieri, has been canceled due to “unforeseen circumstances.”

The event was scheduled for June 1 and 2 in Columbus, with rock band Greta Van Fleet and country star Kane Brown announced in January as the festival’s headline performers. Tickets had already been available for purchase, with two-day passes starting at $155.

“Due to unforeseen circumstances, Guy Fieri’s Flavortown Fest, initially planned for June 1-2 in Columbus, OH, has been canceled,” a spokesperson confirmed in a statement shared with Nexstar’s WCMH. “Thank you to all our Flavortown Fest fans for understanding and your support along this journey.”

The spokesperson said organizers are issuing full refunds to everyone who purchased passes.

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In addition to Greta and Brown, several other acts were scheduled to perform on the main stage, including country-music duo LOCASH, country artist Niko Moon, and Bret Michaels, the front man of rock band Poison.

A press release for the festival teased plenty of “turbo-charged” food as well as events curated by Fieri and other notable chefs. One of the festival’s areas (“Culinary Stadium”) was also slated to host food competitions, while another stage would feature comedy battles and art demonstrations, according to the release. Most of those experiences would have been situated along a festival thoroughfare nicknamed “Bitchin’ Avenue.”

“I was actually born in Columbus, Ohio, so one might say it’s pretty much the birthplace of Flavortown,” Fieri said when announcing the festival last November. “But in 2024, we’re making it official with the launch of Flavortown Fest, two full days of awesome music, the best chefs, real deal food from around the nation and a whole lotta fun that you’re gonna have to see to believe.”

The cancellation comes as Fieri is opening a new restaurant this spring in Columbus, a yet-to-be-named Italian concept inside the Scioto Downs racetrack and casino. A Scioto Downs spokesperson said the restaurant will feature “an old-school Italian feel polished with textured glass screens, rustic wood finishes, an open pizza & pasta prep station and gallery walls.”

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The festival was also supposed to launch Flavortown Cares, an impact program to support the Columbus community, which would have donated a portion of proceeds from every ticket sold to the National Veterans Memorial and Museum, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Ohio and the Mid-Ohio Food Collective.

Still, a $10,000 donation will be made to the three charity partners that would have benefitted from the festival.

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