A Buffalo-based concert promoter has been sued by New York State Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman for failing to provide refunds for Buffalove Music Festival 2017 after it was cancelled this summer, per The Buffalo News.
Buffalove was supposed to take place on July 20 – 23 at The Woods at Bear Creek in Franklinville. The festival was advertised on its Facebook event page as “4 nights of Camping, 40+ Live Bands & DJ’s on multiple stages, including Late Night Campfire Jams, Vendors, a Kid’s Tent,” and featured mostly local acts from upstate New York as well as some bigger names in the jam band music scene like Electron, Pink Talking Fish, and Tom Hamilton’s American Babies.
The complaint claims that festival promoter Cody Conway cancelled Buffalove on June 5, but failed to provide refunds within 90 days as promised. The cancellation announcement from Facebook is below:
In full, it reads:
“BUFFALOVE MUSIC FESTIVAL 2017 HAS BEEN CANCELLED!
Due to very unfortunate and unmanageable circumstances, Buffalove Music Festival – June 20-23, 2017 at The Woods at Bear Creek in Franklinville, NY has been CANCELLED! ALL TICKETS WILL BE REFUNDED! Please allow up to 90 days for your Buffalove Music Festival Ticket Order to be refunded.
TICKET ORDERS WILL NOT BE REFUNDED BY TICKEYFLY!! ALL Ticket Order Refunds will be processed and issued by Buffalove Music Festival LLC. – Within 90 Days of June 5th 2017. Emails will be sent to the Confirmation Email Addresses of every Ticket Order confirming the details of your refund. Please direct ALL questions and comments about your Ticket Order Refund to BuffaloveRefunds@gmail.com.
We are VERY SORRY to have to cancel our Festival for 2017 due to multiple reasons beyond our control and in house issues that would have left too much uncertainty. Due to these unforseen circumstances, it has unfortunately left us with no other option than to cancel the event this July. Please accept our sincerest apologies for the cancellation
We thank EACH and EVERY one of you who supported Buffalove Music Festival this year and every year in the past. We truly have so much love for you all, Artists and Attendees alike. It has been an unbelievably incredible 4 years and the memories made with everyone will last a lifetime, hopefully the friendships as well.
With Deepest Regrets,
Buffalove Music Festival LLC.
In total, 146 New Yorkers purchased tickets from Conway for a combined $14,896.42 including service fees, with tickets ranging from $85 to $125 a piece. After receiving consumer complaints, the Attorney General’s Office launched an investigation.
The Office learned that Ticketfly, a site through which Conway sold tickets, made a payment totaling $13,305 to Conway for the tickets purchased on its site and expected him to refund the ticket-buyers. When Conway failed to do so, Ticketfly provided the refunds to consumers who purchased tickets through its site themselves.
However, the would-be concertgoers who made payments directly to Conway did not receive refunds. In one instance, Conway still owed a customer $1,000 for a cabin rental during the weekend of the festival.
The AG’s Office served Conway with a subpoena requiring that he hand over all records of the ticket sales; his failure to cooperate with the investigation led to the lawsuit, which also seeks to prohibit Conway from promoting concerts or engaging in any business in New York State until he pays full restitution, penalties and costs.
“New Yorkers should get what they pay for – and they’re entitled to timely refunds if event organizers don’t follow through on their promises,” Schneiderman said. “My office won’t tolerate scammers who trick hardworking consumers into forking over cash for performances they’ll never see.”