PHOENIX — Add the M3F music festival to the list of events that have been canceled for 2021 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
"Safety is a non-negotiable. We worked tirelessly to explore every option imaginable, turning over every stone, and ultimately the stars did not align for a safe event this year," read a statement that was shared Wednesday on the festival's social media accounts.
"This was an extremely difficult decision for us to make. M3F is a 100% non-profit event focused on giving back to the community around us. We strive to make a positive impact every year, and while that hasn’t changed this year, a lot of other things have; we know the best way to support this community is to refrain from hosting an event," the statement said.
Last November, organizers seemingly announced the dates of their 2021 festival -- March 5 & 6 -- writing on Instagram, "Couldn't be more stoked to see you in 2021—safely, of course." However, no additional details were ever announced.
It is the first time in 17 years that the festival has been canceled, according to the statement.
"We'll miss you this year but are planning a big comeback in 2022!"
Because of the pandemic, many events that typically happen toward the beginning of the year have been canceled, postponed, or transitioned to virtual events.
The Arizona Renaissance Festival, Innings Fest, Arizona Cocktail Weekend, Tempe Festival of the Arts, Buckeye Air Fair, Lost Dutchman Days, Street Eats Food Truck Festival, Maricopa County Fair, Parada Del Sol and Trail's End Fest, and Scottsdale Arts Festival have all been canceled.
Barrett-Jackson has been rescheduled to March 20-27. Country Thunder Arizona was rescheduled to Oct. 14-17. The Chandler Ostrich Festival has been delayed to the fall, though exact dates have not been announced.
The St. Patrick's Day Parade, Chinese Culture & Cuisine Festival, and Matsuri: Festival of Japan all have planned virtual programs this year.
Major sporting events, such as Waste Management Phoenix Open, Phoenix Suns, Arizona Coyotes, and soon, Spring Training, have all gone on as planned with COVID-19 safety lines and reduced fans.