Hundreds Left Without Refunds after SPI Lantern Fest Cancellation

2 years 11 months 3 weeks ago Thursday, September 21 2017 Sep 21, 2017 September 21, 2017 3:50 PM September 21, 2017 in News

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND – An avid beachgoer said she wants to know why her refund claim for a now-canceled Lantern Fest at South Padre Island was denied.

Three months passed and still no solution. Hundreds of people are wondering who’s responsible for re-funding their money after a lantern festival at the island was canceled.

The Lantern Fest: South Padre Island was scheduled for Friday, Sept. 22 and Saturday, Sept. 23.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS reported SPI commissioners denied permits for the event citing fire and environmental concerns. An SPI resident claimed the lanterns themselves are not biodegradable.

Aundrea Mata said she purchased six tickets for a total of $177. She said she tried every way possible to get a refund, but her claim was denied for so called “government intervention or regulation.”

We reached out to the Lantern Fest but haven’t heard back as to why her claim was canceled.

Last month, the company told CHANNEL 5 NEWS the city was at fault since they canceled the event after tickets were already being sold.

“We’re kind of just at a standstill. We’re all in limbo wondering where our money is or who we can talk to as to the path we need to take to get our money back,” said Mata.

When asked why tickets were sold if the city hadn’t approved the permit, SPI interim public information officer Nikki Soto was unable to provide an answer falling back on saying it’s unfortunate how the sequence of events took place.

Soto said the city was contacted by Lantern Fest. The agency provided step-by-step instructions on how ticket holders can obtain a refund.

The city of South Padre Island sent the following statement reminding the public about the cancellation: 

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