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FAA tells Palm Tree Festival to find another location for Hamptons event

Organizers of the annual Palm Tree Festival, which bills itself as an electronic dance music concert with a “tropical lifestyle” as its theme, may have to find another location for the June event after a request to hold it again at Francis S. Gabreski Airport in Westhampton was rejected. Beach.

The Federal Aviation Administration, in a letter to airport manager Joshua Smith on Wednesday, denied a request to close one runway at the Suffolk County Airport between June 16 and 23, and a second runway on June 22 and 23.

The letter suggested that organizers look at Hamptons locations other than an active airport to hold the festival, but noted that the FAA’s decision is not final and may be appealed.

“Holding this event elsewhere will ensure the safety of the flying public and protect concertgoers who may intentionally/unintentionally enter an active movement area,” wrote Evelyn Martinez, manager of the FAA’s New York Airports District Office.

Representatives for organizer Squadra Entertainment did not respond to requests for comment. Suffolk County officials said they may appeal.

“The county has met with event organizers and will evaluate potential options,” Mike Martino, spokesman for Suffolk County Executive Edward P. Romaine, said in an email.

The FAA approved the festival in 2021, 2022 and 2023. An FAA spokesperson said the agency changed its guidelines for allowing runway connections last May.

“In 2023, the FAA advised the (Gabreski) airport that it would not approve the event in future years,” the FAA spokesperson said in an email.

Tickets ranging from $315 to $522 for VIP admission are still being sold online.

The double headliners are DJ and Norwegian EDM producer Kygo, born Kyrre Gørvell-Dahll, founder of the lifestyle brand Palm Tree Crew, the touring festival’s production company, and Stockholm-based trio Swedish House Mafia.

Squadra initially tried to host the festival in 2021 on the grounds of Nova’s Ark in Water Mill, the site of a controversial 2020 Chainsmokers concert investigated by the state health department for not adhering to COVID-19 guidelines. Southampton Town officials denied their request to hold the concert there in 2021, citing traffic, safety and other concerns, and the festival was instead held at Gabreski Airport.