The Metallion Festival is no more.
The annual metal music extravaganza has punched the sky for the past five years, bringing such crusher names as Aggression, Terrifier, Touch The Sun, Gladius Sky, Tyrant's Blood, Iron Kingdom, Hellchamber, Cocaine Moustache, Over the Coals, Axis Disrupt, Zuckuss, and it closed with Michigan's metal maniacs Battlecross.
Through blazing heat, cold rain and apocalyptic forest fire smoke, the Metallion Festival put Prince George on a unique music map and tourist route. Metal fans are dedicated and passionate.
This week, local musician and founder of the festival, Brad Foster, said the burdens of underwriting the two-day event, were now beyond his capabilities.
"Metallion Festival has been cancelled," Foster said in a media statement.
"Due to the fest being funded (for the most part) from one man's paycheque, and recent changes in his employment situation, we have no choice but to cancel so he can protect his family's interests."
He told The Citizen that more time with family was what he would value most about setting aside the incalculable time spent organizing the event.
"This festival came about by strange means," said Foster during the leadup to the first year.
"My band (Deveined) played Armstrong Metal Festival last year (2013). One of the bands on the bill was Tyrant's Blood out of Vancouver - a huge band from Van who have toured the world. Their members are all friends with our singer Sean Robinson. Their guitarist Marco Banco had mentioned he wanted to come up for some camping and fishing. Sean has contact with the Brookside Resort (the site of all the Metallion events) through work. They got to talking and Sean figured what better than to have a weekend metal and hard rock festival and invite all our old and new friends in the underground metal scene up for a concert and then they can stay and camp/fish with us and our band and friends. Metallion Festival was born."
Foster gave particular thanks to Blake Productions and technician Darren Neufeld for all the years of technical professionalism providing sound and light services.
He thanked many family, friends, bands, and the RCMP for being reasonable in their keeping of the peace and safety. "Every single person that ever attended owes you gratitude for that," he said.
His biggest thanks went to the owners of Brookside Resort.
"To Pam and Percy, you are amazing," he said.
"Allowing hundreds of longhairs to invade your property every year to party as hard as they can is not an easy choice to make. For those who don't know, they cleared their land of all outbuildings, levelled the ground, ensured a liqour store onsite, and provided deadly homemade food for everyone, every year. Words cannot express the gratitude the local scene owes you two. Thanks for putting up with my (BS)."
After the first edition of Metallion, once the dust had settled, Foster told The Citizen "We aren't in it to make money, we are in it to make memories."
One more Metallion mission accomplished.
Foster said he was by no means closed to the idea of being a future impresario once again, but it would take a different form than an outdoor, multi-band, multi-day event.
"Thank you everyone. This is not the end, just the end of Metallion."