By Rachael Grealish
Once Kendal Calling came under the mercy of COVID-19 restrictions for a second time, one group of friends knew there was only one thing to do – throw a party.
Last month the organisers behind Kendal Calling called off the festival due to uncertainties around COVID guidance.
Although devastating, this wasn’t going to be an issue for ten West Cumbrians who threw their very own ‘Keekle Calling’ – a private party themed after, and in honour of, the popular event.
In just three weeks the group of ten friends – Liz Cannon, Liam Smith, Lauren Poland, Keir Pirie, Amy McGregor, Beth McGregor, Luke Bell, Reece Todd, Daniel Machin and Ellie Herbert now known as Liquid Gold Productions – organised and put together a party for 50 family members and friends at Keekle, in West Cumbria, on Saturday July 31.
Speaking to The Herdwick, Liz Cannon, explained the group simply couldn’t be without the event for a second year and threw their own.
“Kendal Calling is one of the main events of the year for us and there’s always a big group of us that go,” she said, “So, when we found out it had been cancelled for a second time and we would be without it again we decided you know what why not just put our own on.”
As difficult as it sounds to organise, Liz said with a ‘good team of people behind you it’s a walk in the park’ to put together.
She said: “Planning wise we actually managed to put it all together in about three weeks – which is insane really, but when you’ve got a good team of people behind you it’s a walk in the park.
“We spent the whole day on the Friday before cutting out and making the signs and Beth McGregor has been working on the Keekle Calling sign for a couple of weeks which turned out amazing too.”
As for entertainment Liz said the bands that performed were friends so ‘it was easy to get them on board with the promise of a few beers and a great day out’.
However, organising a party this scale is small compared to other ventures Liz takes on as she’s one of the minds and organisers behind the upcoming Mighty Boof Festival at Copeland Stadium next week, August 13 and 14 – a festival that’s been on an even longer hiatus than Kendal Calling.
Liz said: “Working the Boof has definitely upped my events management skill set for sure but it wouldn’t have been possible without all of us together.
“We all brought different things to the table which absolutely made it as great as it was.”
The Boof Festival has been on the back burner for six years after the organiser took some time off to open their own pub, in Whitehaven, but this year they’re back.
Liz explained: “I’m definitely very excited for the Boof now this was a great warm up. After six years off I can’t tell you how happy I am to be back doing festivals again.”
As much fun as it was, nothing will compare to the OG festival and the group are very excited to get back to the fields next year.
“We have all rolled our tickets over and will definitely be happy to be back in the fields next year,” Liz said.
But, even with the promise of Kendal Calling next year, Liz did tease us by saying: “You never know there may be a Keekle Calling next year too now we’ve dipped our toes in… to be confirmed.”