The charity event – which saw all profits going to charities including No Kid Hungry, Children’s Medical Fund of NY and Southampton Fresh Air Home – has come under heavy criticism after videos of the outdoor drive-in event on Saturday (25.07.20) appeared to show people ignoring the safety measures.
However, organisers In The Know Experiences and Invisible Noise told Billboard in a lengthy statement: “The video that everyone is talking about was taken from an angle that doesn’t properly convey how careful we were to follow the guidelines created by the CDC.
“We did everything in our power to enforce New York’s social distancing guidelines and collaborated with all state and local health officials to keep everyone safe.
“Upon arrival, individuals within each car had their temperatures taken and were also provided complimentary face masks before driving to their designated 20′ x 20′ spot.
“Guests were also instructed that they would not be allowed to leave their designed spots for any reason other than to use the restroom facilities.
“Announcements and reminders were made every 30 minutes from the main stage, and security guards regularly patrolled the area to encourage mask wearing and promote social distancing guidelines.”
The company added that they “followed all proper and current protocol” amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Guests had to complete a questionnaire before ticket purchases – which cost between $1,250 and $25,000 – were confirmed, while concert-goers also received free face masks and had their temperatures taken upon arrival.
They added: “When we decided to produce this Drive-In Concert Fundraiser, our goal was to bring some joy into people’s lives during these difficult times, and do it in the safest possible environment.
“We also wanted to give back to these important charities, create awareness for these local businesses and provide work to over 350 people who have been unemployed as a result of the pandemic.”