Summer in Portland is going to be much quieter this year.
For the first time in 18 years, MusicfestNW—one of the city's biggest music festivals, which is owned and produced by Willamette Week—is not going to happen.
It is always a bit awkward reporting on MFNW, for obvious reasons, but here's what we can tell you: The festival—which started in 2000 with a multi-venue format in the mold of South By Southwest before moving exclusively to Waterfront Park in 2014—had been aligned with Pabst Brewing's Project Pabst event the past two years. At the end of 2017, Pabst decided to go in a different direction, and the two festivals ended their partnership.
MFNW had been discussing returning to the old club-based format, but given the tight turnaround for booking and sponsorship, the organizers recently decided to put the festival on hiatus. The hope is that some version of MFNW will return next year.
Representatives for Project Pabst did not immediately respond to inquiries about their plans.
MFNW isn't the only festival taking the year off: What the Festival, the annual electronic music gathering typically held two hours outside Portland in Central Oregon, announced that they would not be returning in 2018, but hope to return in 2019.