NEWS: Drunkenness at Cavendish Beach Music Festival worst yet, meeting hears

(Hey, it looks like Islanders may have needed to let off more steam than their neighbours were ready to accept.  Sound familiar?  Everybody’s for a good ruckus time, as long as it doesn’t upset the quiet disposition folks have come to expect.  Oh, NIMBY.  Here’s a story from about the town hall meeting to appease the community.  Damn those meddling kids! – Note: the photos in this report are not from the article or even the event in question – just funny drunk people on the beach. – FATS)

A public meeting in North Rustico, P.E.I. Tuesday night heard complaints from North Shore residents that this year’s Cavendish Beach Music Festival was the worst yet for public drunkenness and noise.

The festival, marking its seventh year in 2015, was held in the second week of July. It drunk_trail_dayscalls itself the largest music festival in Atlantic Canada, attracting more than 70,000 people.

But Tuesday’s public meeting heard some are getting concerned the crowds are getting out of hand.

Some campsite owners said this year more patrons were binge drinking before the show, with some not even making it to the concert.

The owners of Marco Polo Land said two men climbed the fence at their pool and one was badly injured.

RCMP could not confirm the level of the injuries or if the men involved planned to attend the concert.

Others at the meeting spoke or wrote in about concert goers vandalizing property, having public sex and trespassing, saying they are sick of the behaviour.

Other campground operators said they had a very small amount of bad behaviour on the festival weekend, and a few people in the crowd recognized the amount of money the festival draws in to the community.

Liquor serving hours extended

The local community council expressed concern that they were not consulted about an extension to alcohol serving hours on the Friday night.

There was a large crowd waiting to buy tickets at the front gates at around 9 p.m.

1297524972387_ORIGINALAccording to RCMP the crowd was getting impatient. To avoid a large crowd exiting all at once the RCMP and liquor board made the decision to extend the bar hours in certain areas to stagger leaving times.

Council was not consulted about the change. Both the liquor board and concert organizers said they realize that was a mistake not to discuss this with council first.

RCMP said the change was legal, because it was made in the interest of public safety.

Drinking not a problem on concert grounds

Whitecap Entertainment CEO Jeff Squires was at the event and said he didn’t see an increase in binge drinking on site.

Squires said he will continue to work with the community and address their concerns.

The council will take the comments from residents into consideration when they make future planning decisions for events.