ORGANISERS of the popular Beer and Cider Festival scheduled for this weekend (November 16-17) in Port Macquarie have postponed the event due to fire activity across the region.
Event organiser Scott Mesiti made the tough call to postpone the event in order to ensure the safety of both locals and those thinking of travelling to Port Macquarie for the event.
"We were hoping the fires would be out by now and we'd all be shouting our legendary fire fighters a beer at the festival this weekend. But, with this week's weather predictions and personally knowing so many affected it's hard to promote an event when you know so many of your community are hurting," Mr Mesiti said.
"We want to push back the festival to February to give the town enough time to recover and focus on doing our bit to help in the meantime. We apologise to any of those who may be put out but hope you can understand under the circumstances."
With more than 850,000 hectares of land in New South Wales destroyed since the start of the bushfire season, and businesses and town locals already feeling the impacts of neighbouring fires, New South Wales premier Gladys Berejiklian officially announced a state of emergency.
As more than 60 major fires burn across the state, the NSW Ambulance has also issued a health warning for those affected, which includes information on potential hazards, general safety practices and medical signs to be aware of.
Ticket holders can retain their tickets for the event which will be held on Saturday, February 22, 2020. Those who can't make next year's rescheduled date will receive a full refund.
Those who are travelling should be able to move local accommodation plans.
The Port Macquarie Beer and Cider Festival apologies for any inconvenience.