Cavendish Beach Music Festival still a go despite incoming storm

TC Media
Published on July 3, 2014

Arthur isn’t on the concert lineup and he’s not welcome to attend.

But that may not stop the season’s first Atlantic tropical storm from paying P.E.I. a visit this weekend.

Forecasters are keeping a close eye on tropical storm Arthur, which was just east of Florida on Wednesday afternoon.

That includes organizers at Cavendish Beach Music Festival (CBMF), who are keeping an eye on what develops with the weather.

“Nobody’s even talking about that,’’ festival president Jeff Squires said when asked if there was a chance the event, or part of it, could be called off.

“That (storm) could be out in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean in 24 hours. We’ll continue to keep an eye on it.’’

While CBMF was still moving ahead with its three-day concert this weekend, organizers with Cape Breton’s Stan Rogers Folk Festival in Canso called their event off, the first time in its 17-year history the event has been cancelled.

“We consulted a number of forecasting services, including Environment Canada and determined there is a high likelihood of winds in excess of 100 km/h and heavy rainfall,’’ said Troy Greencorn, artistic director of the Stan Rogers festival. “It is impossible in these circumstances for us to guarantee public safety.’’

The P.E.I. Bluegrass and Old-time Music Festival is also scheduled for this weekend in Rollo Bay but The Guardian couldn’t reach organizers on Wednesday.

Linda Libby, meteorologist with Environment Canada, said the Canadian Hurricane Centre in Dartmouth, N.S., went into full operational mode Wednesday morning.

She said Arthur developed towards the northern part of the Caribbean in water temperatures that are four to five degrees warmer than usual.

As of Wednesday, there was a wide cone of uncertainty with Arthur.

The storm’s path could take it through the middle of New Brunswick and impact the entire Maritimes or it could veer well south of Nova Scotia and result in nothing more than a typical day of rain and wind.

Libby said the storm should be post tropical by the time it impacts P.E.I. and that’s expected to happen late Saturday into Sunday.

“But even these types of storms can have a significant impact,’’ Libby said.

That could mean up to 100 millimetres of rain for those to the west of the storm’s track and wind gusts in excess of 90 km/h for folks to the east, certainly enough to take the fun out of doing anything outside.

“Anybody going to some (outdoor) events really should be monitoring this and the organizers should be monitoring this.’’

Kim Griffin, spokeswoman for Maritime Electric, said it’s too early to start speculating on a potential weekend storm.

The utility has scheduled a planned power outage on Sunday morning for the entire eastern part of the province to carry out preventative maintenance on the system.

From 2 a.m. to 6 a.m. Sunday, 20,652 customers are supposed to be without power.

Depending on the weekend forecast at the time, Griffin said a further decision on that planned power outage will be made on Friday.

Libby said Environment Canada still believes it

will be a normal to

below-normal year for hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean.