Jacksonville, Florida’s annual three-day music festival, Welcome To Rockville, will relocate to the Daytona International Speedway next year while construction takes over the original festival complex.
Organizers announced the move over the weekend, noting that the 2020 festival, set to take place from May 8 to 10, will be “bigger than ever.” Danny Wimmer Presents, the promoter for the festival, said that while he loves his hometown and is proud of what Rockville has accomplished over the years, “there was no longer a space at Metropolitan Park for us to deliver the kind of festival experience that Florida’s rock fans deserve.”
Welcome to Rockville is relocating to Daytona Beach, FL!
The 2020 festival will be held May 8, 9, + 10 at the Daytona International Speedway.
— WelcomeToRockville (@RockvilleFest) July 6, 2019
“With the up-and-coming development around the sports complex, mainly the construction involving the Hart’s Bridge overpass, we understand the need to move Welcome to Rockville to Daytona in 2020,” city spokesperson Nikki Kimbleton said in a statement. “However, we look forward to working with the promoters and bringing it back home to Jacksonville and the new and improved facilities in 2021.”
Nonetheless, fans who have been attending the festival over the past nine years aren’t that happy with the change, noting that Jacksonville’s Met Park was a staple in the community.
One fan, Chip Southworth, told News 4Jax that he doesn’t think the new venue is a good trade for Met Park.
“It was good fun, you know, rock ‘n’ roll,” Southworth said. “It was lots of people, seems like a big loss for the city. It was literally tens of thousands of people that roll into town.”
Others are upset that the festival is moving on the 10-year anniversary and ruining the tradition, but are hopeful that it will return to its hometown in years to come.