Organizers cancel FreakFest for third year in a row
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Organizers have cancelled the Freakfest celebration for the third year in a row, Madison’s Central Business Improvement District (BID) confirmed Sunday afternoon.
The festival is usually held all up and down State Street to celebrate Halloween in October. Since 2020, it has been cancelled due to rising COVID-19 rates in Dane County.
Madison’s Central BID said COVID was not the reasoning for this year’s cancellation, but rather a difficulty in drumming up funding and support for the event after the previous folks running it stopped.
The decision comes from the mayor’s office.
“There’s a good chance as of now that we’ve ended the Freakfest chapter of a long State Street Halloween history,” District 4 Alder Michael Verveer said.
Verveer, who serves the area including State Street, said city hall has considered cancelling the Halloween festival even before the pandemic. He cited the cost to taxpayers and the unrest downtown as some of the reasons leading to the decision from the mayor’s office.
Edgewood College senior Anneka Dorn say the cancellation of this year’s Freakfest might keep crime down.
“And it also brings out really a dangerous crowd sometimes. people are using , as people are drinking a lot on campus and people are dappling in new substances,” said Dorn.
When people dress as characters it is hard to understand their actions.
“They might be scary because they might be in character or they might be scary figures that are actually trying to attack you or attack businesses around here,” said Dorn.
When Dorn was a freshman she says that her resident assistant warned her and other students to be vigilant and ask for help if need be.
“As a female in the streets you always have to take precautions. but especially on the night we are always warned because we always were set up with the presumption that its dangerous out there,” said Dorn.
Some people say during the Halloween season it is best to have safety plan when going out.
“You have to make sure you are not alone and have the adequate kind of help that you need if you get into a situation as well,” said Dorn.
More details about the cancellation are expected Monday.
Copyright 2022 WMTV. All rights reserved.