A few thoughts about concerts at Peace Park

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I live next to the Peace Park on Ramsey Avenue — actually I can see the entire park from my yard — and I want to share with you some concerns about the recent Freedom Fest event at the new park.

I understand the Freedom Fest was a “dry run” for possible future events at the Peace Park. While the event was fun and had great music, I am concerned that the event organizers did not put their best efforts into making this also a safe event that is considerate to the nearby neighbors.

• The Temporary Use Permit for the “Fourth of July Community Picnic and Celebration” at the Great Northern Veterans Peace Park had two conditions and I believe the second condition was not met. My husband and I never received the required “notification flyers about the event.” We live right next to the Peace Park.

• Music continued to play after 10 p.m., I noted this at 10:17 p.m., which is significantly after the 10 p.m. (not just a minute or two or three.) This was not an issue on Fourth of July since there was lots of fireworks noise until around midnight, however I wouldn’t want to have this set a precedent. The Santa Barbara Bowl in California, which is located in a very dense residential neighborhood, has a very strict 10 p.m. noise cutoff and it seems to work nicely for the neighbors.

• There was a lot of very loud music throughout the day (before 5 p.m.) coming from the Peace Park for sound checks and pre-recorded music. I understand sound checks are necessary to have a quality event but do we really have to have loud music/noise all day in addition to the event?

• Lastly, I am very, very concerned that there was no fencing placed between the event and the railroad tracks. During the event I saw people crossing the railroad tracks (not on the road) carrying items in their arms. It is possible that those people may have had some alcoholic beverages during the event and I was concerned for their safety.

— MaiBritt Bennett

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