For two decades, the East Side’s annual Summer Soulstice Music Festival has marked the arrival of summer with a day full of music, food, drinks, and that one guy who always shows up carrying a giant lizard. Of course, last year’s Soulstice—which would have been the 20th installment of the large-scale event—was canceled due the COVID-19 crisis and replaced with a virtual “Tribute To Soulstice.” Though some festivals are going forward with plans for 2021, Milwaukee Record has just learned that Summer Soulstice will not be one of them.
The cancellation was confirmed by Elizabeth Brodek, Executive Director of The East Side Business Improvement District.
“It is canceled for this year, as we did not have solid information or a certain understanding of the pandemic landscape when we would have had to plan it,” Brodek told Milwaukee Record in an email.
While mask requirements, occupancy restrictions, and other pandemic-related protocols have been relaxed in Milwaukee (and most other parts of the country) in recent days, it’s far too little notice for organizers to safely and effectively pull off a street festival of Summer Soulstice’s size and scope by mid-June.
Even though Soulstice isn’t in the cards for 2021, Brodek says there are plans to host a “Live @ The Lot” music series at the East Side Art Lot (1915 E. North Ave.) the last Thursday of each month between June and September. Be on the lookout for the lineup for those performances set to take place on June 24, July 29, August 26, and September 30. Brodek also says organizers are “looking forward to bringing Soulstice back in 2022.”
We’ll see you at Summer Soulstice next year, Milwaukee.