Music festival proposed for pier in mid-August

Proponents of a music festival on the pier in mid-August will be back before councillors at their next meeting, Apr. 28.

Proponents of a music festival on the pier in mid-August will be back before councillors at their next meeting, Apr. 28.

They outlined some of their plans and answered concerns at council’s Apr. 14 meeting, stating they would definitely change the proposed date as it conflicted with Jazz At The Lake Festival.

Councillors requested a full presentation at their next meeting.

True Channel Entertainment had planned to host Summer City Music Jam on the pier in the provincial park on Aug. 16. While the application had been submitted to the Friends of Sylvan Lake Provincial Park committee, Ron Lebsack, the town’s community services director, brought it forward “as an event like this will have a significant impact on the Town of Sylvan Lake”.

Among the bands included in the proposal were the Juno award winning Sam Roberts Band, Walk Off The Earth, The Trews, Foster The People, and Girl Talk.

“Please drink responsibly and enjoy the music,” stated the front page.

The event is billed as “a one day, family friendly music festival that anticipates approximately 4,000 attendees”. It would run from noon to 11 p.m. and would require the pier area to be closed to public use the day before, day of and day following the event except for those with tickets. A beer garden would be included, according to the proposal.

Earlier in the council meeting, Eric Allison, president of the Jazz At The Lake Festival Society raised concerns that the two events would conflict, particularly because one of the jazz festival’s free events, a family picnic concert would take place the same day in Lions Legacy Park, just a few blocks from the pier.

“We are certainly not against bringing more musical events to town,” he said. “We say the more the merrier! But we strongly feel that any musical event on the pier (or anywhere else in town, for that matter) on the same weekend could seriously damage the jazz festival for this year and in fact, its future sustainability.”

Allison pointed out the festival has been held on the third weekend in August for the past 12 years.

During discussion, councillor Dale Plante said he wants “to encourage something that’s going to bring a healthy atmosphere to town. I’m very concerned that whatever comes to the community contributes to the fabric of the community.” He asked how this event would contribute. He also voiced concerns about parking and how it would be impacted in the area.

“I like the idea, I’d like to have it,” said councillor Matt Prete. When the Trauma Tour was in town he took his kids there and they had a good time, he related. His only concern was a conflict with the jazz festival.

“I believe they’re two different crowds,” but he added, “I’d prefer two different weekends.”

Councillor Jas Payne noted that with Shake The Lake not happening this year, the community is definitely going to feel that loss. “This is not the type of event I want to say no to.” He added that while the spectators may be different for the two events, “I think being on the same day would be a disadvantage to Jazz At The Lake. I’d really like to go to Jazz At The Lake but I’d really like to see Sam Roberts. I would not support trying to have them at the same time.”

Councillors deferred any decision on the proposal until their next meeting.