County Issues Stop Order For This Tea Party

 

Several people dressed as "who they really are", as quoted by one attendee, sway to the techno music pumping out from one of the stages at the Mad hatter Music Festival.
 
Controversy hit Leduc County last week with the seemingly sudden appearance of a "music" festival in the eastern end of the county. The festival, called the Mad Hatter Music Festival, was slated to take place from August 23-26 and was advertised as far away as Kelowna, BC for ticket sales. However, festival organizers seemed to be attempting to fly under the County's radar for as long as possible, as the first time most County Counselors were made aware of it was at the beginning of the week when issues arose with non-compliance for the permits required, and when concerns and complaints began pouring in from neighbours in the area. Unfortunately, that was far from the last time the County was to hear about this festival.
Held on private land, the festival advertised itself as "wanting to impact our community with a wholesome experience that encourages us to improve ourselves through music, art, love, awareness and opportunity.". But with sponsors such as Bogarts Pipes and Paper, and Hemp City, plus further statements on their website such as "Welcome to the Rabbit Hole", and "Mad Hatter 4:20 12 Through The Looking Glass", it did not seem to lend itself to the "wholesome experience" they were supposedly promoting.
Those observances aside, the issues that the County encountered with the festival were the fact that even though they attempted to work with the organizer Sarah Dantzer right up to the day the festival began, the festival had still failed to submit an emergency plan, there were no copies of any health permits sent in, no official first aid responders on site, and no plans for additional security over the course of the weekend. For these reasons and more the County was forced to revoke the festival's permit and issue a stop order on August 23rd.
The County was then notified by festival organizers that there were already almost 1000 people on site and that they were going to go ahead and run the festival anyway.
With four music stages set up in tiny man made clearings throughout the bush accessible only by muddy footpaths, and the entire site only accessible by walking or driving through approximately a 1/4 mile of hilly farm fields that would have been impossible for any emergency service vehicles to traverse, and attendees setting up tents throughout the trees wherever they pleased, it was easy to see how serious safety issues could have arisen very quickly.  
In speaking with the organizer, Sarah Dantzer, on Monday Aug. 27th, after the festival was over, she stated that the weekend went "really well", and there had been no problems with anyone or anything over the course of the festival. Sarah mentioned that the only medical issue they encountered was an allergic reaction to a bee sting, and that person was taken to a local medical facility where they were treated and recovered. 
When asked about any problems she had encountered with the permit being revoked by the County, Sarah claimed that over the course of the weekend all the conditions set out by the County had been met, but there was "no time" to get their permit reinstated. She also said that she would be having a follow up meeting with the County later in the week.
Just an hour later that same afternoon, a press release was issued by the County of Leduc that seemed to conflict with the earlier statements Sarah had made. The release stated that Leduc County Safety Code Officials inspected the site on Aug. 24th and issued a notice of non-compliance, the maximum fine for this being $15,000.00 plus $1,000.00 for every day the the festival continued after that. In addition to the safety code violations, County Peace Officers also issued a $500.00 fine to both the property owner and the festival organizers. Additional charges and fines are expected to be levied since RCMP received eight more complaints after the original charges had been laid on Aug. 25th.
In the release, Rick Thomas, General Manager for Community Services in the County explained that, "It is because of the willful disregard for safety and security that Leduc County has been forced to issue these fines. In addition to the fines, the County will be strengthening it's By-laws to reflect the seriousness with which safety and security are regarded in the County."
So it looks as if this problem plagued festival will be on the move again next year. Reportedly, Leduc County is the fourth county in five years the Mad Hatter Festival has been forced to move to, since after each event, the host Counties have enacted By-laws to ensure it does not return.
 
More Stories:
  • Helping African Grandmothers Wetaskiwin Grands 4 Africa held a tremendously successful luncheon and program in support of the Stephen Lewis Foundation in its work to support grandmothers and community recovery in 15 of the African countries most affected ...
  • The Terry Fox Run Rocked the City of Leduc On average, 500 Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer every day, making fundraising and awareness events like the annual and nationwide Terry Fox Run critical. This year marks the 32nd annual Terry Fox Run for cancer research. ...
  • Keep On Learning Foundation Launched In Maskwacis Submitted by Felisha Crier Hosein My name is Felisha Crier Hosein, the founder and president of the ‘Keep On Learning Foundation’, a non-profit organization created as a way to make a difference in the lives of First Nations’ ...
  • Meet N' Greet Summer Party Summer vacation is over, kids are back to school, gardens are cleared, lawns are mowed, and you don’t know your new neighbour. Well, have a Meet N’ Greet - Show N’ Shine. On Saturday September 13, 2014, Pat & Jean Trottier ...
  • Manluk Centre Officially Opens Although Wetaskiwin’s Manluk Centre Wetaskiwin Regional Aquatics & Fitness has been in operation since June 26th of this year, final touches such as the Donor Wall had to be completed. With great anticipation and careful ...
  • While You’re Making Plans, Life Happens — The One Welcomes A New Face That pretty well sums up Leduc’s 93.1, The One, radio station’s new morning man, James ‘Gruff’ Gushnowski. Gushnowski was born and raised in the small community of Innisfree, located about an hour and a half east of Edmonton, ...
  • Kimto Stage At Waterworks Theatre Brings In Kevin Roy Wetaskiwin and region is whirling in first class entertainment this summer; Loonstock, the RCMP Musical Ride, NASCAR racing, Jay Semko and Punchdrunk concert, Tour of Alberta, Wetaskiwin’s Summer Showcase, the RAM Harvest ...
  • Playhouse For Fun The Millet & District Lions Club of Millet, like many other non-profit organizations in our area, raise funds for community projects. Over the past few months, the Lions Club has been at various events selling raffle tickets ...
  • City Of Leduc More Dynamic Than Ever! The Annual Leduc Community Registration Day is an informative and fun day for the entire family. This year was no different. Hundreds of Leduc and area families converged in the Leduc Recreation Centre (LRC) on Saturday, ...
  • Parade Of Programs Kick Starts Fall And Winter Season On Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014 the Wetaskiwin Drill Hall was a flurry of activity as community groups representing athletic clubs, arts, culture and educational opportunities were displaying their products and services. ...
  • Edward Wolfe Leduc can trace its earliest roots to individuals looking for a new start, and as a place that opened its arms and welcomed people from all over the world. At first, it was a refuge for early homesteaders seeking an opportunity ...
  • Salvation Army Outdoors The Wetaskiwin Corps of the Salvation Army held its church service as well as its annual BBQ and Corn Roast in the beautiful outdoor setting of the Lions' Campground on the last day of August. It was well attended by Salvation ...
  • Calmar Burger Bar - Gone For Now! The Burger Bar has been an icon on the main street of Calmar for decades and is known far and wide for its delicious burgers, green gravy (yes green!) and favorite fast food eatery for many of Calmar’s local residents. Fear ...
  • Sears Kids Cancer Ride Comes to Leduc On Sunday morning, September 10th, a little before 9:30am, a group of cyclists were greeted by Shawn Nawaz and his family, owner of the Leduc Sears Hometown store. They were part of the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride that ...
  • New Sarepta Demolition Derby On Sunday, September 7, 2014 in New Sarepta, a demolition derby in support of minor hockey entertained 1600 spectators despite Mother Nature’s grumpy mood. They were prepared for hard fun and did not care about a little rain. ...




 
  • Leduc Radio Ad
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia