Dear Sunset Family,
It’s been a few months since our last communication. During this time we’ve been staying close to home whilst monitoring the ever-changing effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic, both in our personal lives and the future possibility of Sunset Sound System events. As we approach Springtime, we have come to a critical moment in considering the implications for this coming Summer and our beloved Sunset Campout 2021. We want to take this moment to connect and convey our thoughts, feelings, and outlook for the year as it stands right now.
When thinking about our events and reconvening in the way we love to do, our first and foremost concern is for the health and safety of our community and their families. When we began Sunset in the 90’s, there was a feeling of universal acceptance without judgment in the ethos of Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect. What was most special about the music scene was that it was a safe and unabashed place to be any type of person you wanted to be. In current times, to maintain this with the need for heightened security precautions, we are basing our decisions on the most up-to-date fact-based science from proven and reputable sources. What remains clear are persistent unknown variables and possibilities that affect people in different ways. What may not affect one individual can potentially be life-threatening for another. This is one of the hardest things to comprehend about this virus, that what may seem low risk to one individual can have catastrophic effects on those around them. There has been a boundless stream of information circulating that often is filled with contradictory statements to the scientific consensus about this pandemic. It's understandable that people want to cling to the opinion that a best-case scenario is just around the corner. At the moment, with vaccine distribution ramping up, there is more hope in the air and we are seeing some events planning to be back in action as early as this summer. While we see this as a positive trend in the right direction, we are aligning with the caution of our top epidemiologists that many unknowns remain for the near future.
Besides the direct health implications, another major concern we must consider are the financial ramifications and risk of planning an event which is dependent on upfront investment, both monetarily and in human hours, many months before the event actually takes place and costs can be recouped. Sunset Sound System is a grassroots organization that runs with very tight margins and has relied on the consistency of our community support over the years. To date, there has been little support for the live entertainment industry via government grants or loans, due to the intense demand for the funds allocated. We find ourselves in a precarious situation that is unfamiliar territory and have very little bandwidth if the aforementioned unknowns become a reality and further stress our financial stability. We’ve been hit hard by the pandemic, like many of our colleagues, and are taking great care weighing up all the variables. Most notably of gathering when there is little doubt across a wide array of opinions of the safety of returning to the type of Sunset Sound System party we all know and love (without social distancing and mask enforcement) and mitigates our financial risk as much as possible.
With all these and other considerations in mind, we have made the difficult decision to postpone Sunset Campout 2021 until next year, when we feel it to be much more likely we can provide an ecstatic and inspiring time for us all to frolic in the woods once again. We feel that the current risks and potential for another wave are too high for us to feel comfortable with proceeding with planning this year’s event. We do not want to put our community’s health or our financial stability at risk, especially when thousands of people are still dying every week from this virus. We understand how disappointing and potentially frustrating this may make you feel and rest assured we feel it too, but there is just too much at stake to act hastily. We are willing to wait and see how things pan out with others staging events this summer. Hopefully, those who are more anxious to test the waters will show us a clearer path forward to where we can commune again and where a multi-day camping event truly feels safe for all. We are continually looking forward with hope that our patience will be rewarded and we can be back in full force without all the worries we are currently faced with. We miss our Sunset family! So, we have shifted our focus to the Fall in hopes we can get back to the park, with our Sound System and all of you! We also remain hopeful we’ll be able to set sail on the majestic San Francisco Bay for a very sweet Sunset Halloween Costume Boat Party. Until then, expect more unreleased musical sets from the vast array of Sunset Parties that have not seen the light of day since they were originally recorded. As ever, your continued support means the world to us and we really cannot wait to see you all again on the dance floor. We miss you and wish you continued health and uplifting vibrations to keep you thriving as we get to a place of our new normal.
We truly hope you will stand with us now and imagine that we will be together again soon, dancing under the warm brightness of the sun!
We Love You,
Sunset Sound System
Now for some business....
We know many of you have saved your Sunset Campout tickets from 2020 for 2021 and we are encouraging you to please continue to save those for our much more likely 2022 edition. Even better it would be so very helpful for us if you are in a position to donate your tickets as we continue to have monthly expenses to keep the business afloat. This button links to our ticketing page where you can donate or get a refund. It will be accessible for 14 days and after that all remaining tickets will be rolled over into 2022.