Photo provided by: Phil Ryabkin


The aftermath of the Blue Ridge Rock Festival three weeks ago continues to unravel. As we discussed in Metal Insider’s headbangers’ brawl, attendees report experiencing gastrointestinal issues. The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is actively investigating these complaints in collaboration with the Southside Health District. Several festival-goers, including Andy Petite from Massachusetts, reported by WRIC, have complained of nausea and diarrhea, possibly linked to the event. Petite and three friends who consumed water from festival stations allegedly fell ill, with symptoms aligning. Petite underwent medical testing, suspecting exposure to giardia. To gain insights, VDH urges all attendees to complete a confidential survey regardless of health status. The survey aims to discern patterns and identify the cause of the reported illnesses. Questions encompass water consumption, use of facilities, vendor food intake, and proximity to the Dan River.

Attendees who camped at the festival have continued to describe post-storm conditions as challenging, with camps soaked and overflowing porta-potties. Blue Ridge Rock Festival officials issued a statement last week acknowledging the situation. However, they continued to emphasize that the weather was the reason for the festival’s cancellation, keeping the skepticism alive among attendees. Refund details are yet to be addressed, and the festival pledges to provide more information soon.The recent statement on social media has garnered reactions expressing disbelief and laughter, particularly regarding the weather-related cancellation claim. As the investigation unfolds, concerns about the festival’s handling persist, leaving attendees awaiting further clarity on the health issues and potential refunds.