THE Gum Ball music festival will be shifted to October and held alongside sister event Dashville Skyline in response the coronavirus crisis.
The possibility of the 15th Gum Ball going ahead as scheduled on April 24 to 26 appeared impossible after the Federal Government advised last Friday that all non-essential gatherings of more than 500 people should be avoided as of Monday to minimise the spread of COVID-19.
On Monday evening Gum Ball organisers announced their plans to move the festival to October 1 to 5, traditionally when the alt-country and Americana-themed Dashville Skyline is held at the Lower Belford property.
The two festivals will be held concurrently and known as "Sky Ball."
"Please know we have worked through all options available to us, considering what we see as a vulnerable time for many and have decided this to be the most achievable and safest scenario for all involved," Gum Ball organisers said in a statement.
Any tickets purchased for Gum Ball will be transferable for Sky Ball.
It is unknown if acts scheduled for Gum Ball such as The Church, Harts, The Beautiful Girls and Dyson Stringer Cloher will perform at the rescheduled festival.
"Without a doubt we are devastated to not be able to deliver the amazing festival program we had worked up for April," the statement said.
"But we also must recognise that there is positives to every situation and by recognising those positives, we can begin to move forward and overcome the disappointment.
"We are all working through this huge uncertain challenge together, it's important we all do our best to support each other, particularly those in the creative arts, events, tourism and hospitality industries."
Meanwhile, Spiegeltent has also postponed its Newcastle season scheduled for March 26 to April 19.
"We do not make this decision lightly, and understand that many in our immediate and extended networks will be affected," creative director of Strut & Fret, Scott Maidment, said.
"However, our first priority must be the health and safety of everyone in our community.
"Newcastle loves the Spiegeltent, and we always look forward to the Newcastle season, so it's with a heavy heart that we have come to this decision today."
Popular music restaurant Lizotte's also announced on Monday evening they would be shutting their doors until April 15 after the cancellation of several upcoming shows featuring international acts including US artists Walter Trout and Eileen Jewell.