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Peaceful protest planned to support Pharrell Williams’ Something in the Water Festival locale stance


Pharrell at Something in the Water in April, 2019; Brian Ach/Getty Images for Something in the Water

As Pharrell Williams considers pulling his Something in the Water Festival from his native Virginia Beach following the fatal police shooting of a family member, fans are planning a peaceful protest to show support for him.

The all-star festival was scheduled for April 22-24, 2022, however the 13-time Grammy winner may move the event to another city because his cousin, Donovon Lynch, was shot and killed by a Virginia Beach police officer on March 26, 2021. Following his death, Pharrell called for a federal investigation.

Xiomara-Rosa Fernandez, who administers a Something in the Water Facebook page, told Norfolk ABC affiliate WVEC-TV that a sit-in will take place on Saturday, November 6 at the Virginia Beach waterfront.

“We sit down at the beach, where the stage was, the main stage,” Fernandez says. She added that she expects fans to attend from other cities.

As previously reported, Pharrell wrote a letter last week in response to city manager Patrick Duhaney, who had written to Pharrell saying he wanted to discuss having the event return.

Pharrell wrote that the goal of the festival was “to ease racial tension, to unify the region, bring about economic development opportunities, and broaden the horizons of the local business community. We achieved those things!”

“I wish the same energy I’ve felt from Virginia Beach leadership upon losing the festival would have been similarly channeled following the loss of my relative’s life,” Williams continued.

The Something in the Water festival debuted in 2019, featuring Travis ScottJanelle MonaeSZA, Migos, Lil Uzi Vert and many more. In 2019, 25,000 tickets to the music festival sold out in 21 minutes, and the total economic impact was over $24 million. The event was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

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