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Wisconsin’s Country USA and Rock USA festivals call it quits

Associated Press

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FILE - Jenee Fleenor, left, and Blake Shelton perform "God's Country" at the 53rd annual CMA Awards at Bridgestone Arena, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) — Two of Wisconsin’s biggest annual music festivals are shutting down for good following COVID-related cancellations this summer.

The company that puts on the 25-year-old Country USA and the 9-year-old Rock USA in Oshkosh said this week it plans to file for bankruptcy. The events have featured such headliners as Blake Shelton, Keith Urban and Ozzy Osbourne in recent years.

Neenah-based Hypervibe canceled this year’s festivals in June. Ticketholders said they’ve been trying to get their money back. Drew Rodgers, of Berlin, filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of all ticketholders, but says he isn’t optimistic.

In a note posted to both events’ Facebook pages Monday, Hypervibe said the cancellations were too much for the company to absorb.

“We are heartbroken by the events which have caused this horrible situation,” the post said. “We also care about our loyal patrons, for without them, there wouldn’t have been so many years of these great events. We are trying to do right by our loyal supporters and get you a refund, to the extent possible, quickly and equitably.”

In recent years, Country USA and Rock USA each averaged crowds of more than 25,000 people each day.

Hypervibe says it plans to send letters or emails to ticketholders with instructions on how to fill out bankruptcy claims.

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