If Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival gets postponed until October due to coronavirus concerns, festivalgoers might find themselves braving hotter temperatures than they planned for.
The annual event in Indio, Calif., is set for the weekends of April 10 and April 17, with headliners including Frank Ocean, Rage Against the Machine and Travis Scott. But fearing that local officials will pull the event’s permit — which would bring 250,000 fans to Indio over its two weekends — officials with promoter Goldenvoice are currently in talks to push Coachella to the weekends of Oct. 9 and Oct. 16. Goldenvoice is also working to move its Stagecoach country music festival from April 24 to Oct. 23; that event attracts up to 100,000 attendees.
If the switch happens, pack a handheld fan.
The Weather Channel forecasts that the temperature on Oct. 9 will reach 95 degrees Fahrenheit, and 92 degrees on Oct. 16, with other weather forecast organizations making similar predictions. Temperatures towards the end of the month are only slightly less sweltering — should Stagecoach begin on Oct. 23, first-day attendees can expect a high of 89 degrees.
That’s a bit hotter than predictions for April: Indio reaches a high of 88 degrees that month on average, with a low of 61 degrees. In October, the monthly average high jumps to 92 degrees, and the low to 64 degrees.
The record high for April in Indio is 109 degrees, and 115 degrees for October.
Most travel sites highlight between January and April as the best time to visit Indio. July and August are usually the hottest months in the region, with Indio temperatures reaching an average high of 107 degrees both months. Temperatures cool down only slightly every September (a 102-degree high, on average), then gradually drop until December, which is the coolest month of the year with an average high of 71 degrees.
On Monday, three more cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Riverside County, where Coachella takes place, bringing the county’s total to six. An announcement from Coachella organizers about the fate of the festival is imminent — if the change to October can’t happen, sources told Billboard that the 2020 versions of both Coachella and Stagecoach will likely be canceled.
Meanwhile, the coronavirus outbreak continues to spur cancellations across the spring festival and conference circuit. Austin’s annual South by Southwest event was fully canceled for the first time in its 34-year history on March 6 after the city’s mayor declared a local disaster. Ultra Music Festival in Miami has also been canceled, as well as the ASCAP Experience 2020 conference and Australia’s upcoming World Tour Bushfire Relief concert, which Miley Cyrus was set to headline.