The Donald Trump-themed pep rally known as Freedom Fest won’t be held after all, its organizer announced Friday morning.
Former attorney Eric Deters said in an email and video posted to Facebook that problems getting food vendors and equipment for the Sept. 9 event forced a cancellation of the Northern Kentucky event. He vowed that Freedom Fest would return next September.
That means Donald Trump’s sons and Trump-adjacent celebrities will not be speaking on Deters’ farm 20 miles south of Cincinnati. There will also not be a “special video message” from Trump to his supporters as promised by Deters.
It’s the latest hiccup for what would have been the third annual Freedom Fest. In June, Deters announced Trump himself would headline the event in person. Then a little more than a month later, Deters announced Trump couldn’t make it due to campaign events in Iowa, forcing the cancellation. Then, in mid-August, Deters said it was back on due to demand from the public and speakers that were lined up.
He told The Enquirer in a text that several of the people organizing the event called him last night about problems related to logistics.
Having canceled the event a few weeks ago made it harder to get the tents, lights, food trucks and other pieces needed to put on a festival.
“I refuse to put on a lousy event,” Deters said in the email. “This is all on me. We will be back next year with a bigger, better event for the weekend.”
The roster of speakers included a long list of celebrities in the Trump world. In addition to Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, speakers included filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza, a controversial filmmaker who made the debunked election conspiracy film “2000 Mules”; TV personality Dog the Bounty Hunter; and former MMA fighter and former Huntington Beach City Councilman Tito Ortiz.
The event, started in 2021, has drawn thousands of Trump supporters to Deters’ farm in the rural community of Morning View, Kentucky.
Trump Jr. and Eric Trump headlined the event in 2022.
Deters, in the Facebook video, said the event will be back next year ‒ a presidential election year ‒and will be a three-day event, with a music festival on Friday, political speakers on Saturday and a church service on Sunday.
Deters has been a controversial figure in Northern Kentucky for years. Gov. Andy Beshear called Deters out in July for “blatantly racist and homophobic comments” Deters has made over the years on social media and in videos. Those remarks, which include questioning why white people can’t use a racial slur in reference to Black people and using slurs in reference to gay people, have drawn attention online this month after a video compilation of several such instances was published on YouTube.
Republican governor candidate Daniel Cameron decided not to attend this year’s Freedom Fest after receiving criticism.
Deters had his law license suspended in 2021 and pleaded guilty in March to a misdemeanor for chasing down his nephew after he was flipped the middle finger.
A judge in 2020 banned him from the Hamilton County courthouse for comments Deters made on his podcast, “The Bulldog.”
He also lost his run for governor in the May primary, garnering 6% of the vote and coming in fourth.