News Column

Alan Jackson show needs a permit

July 6, 2014

By Pamela Gould, The Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va.

July 07--Alan Jackson, the country music star who gave the earthquake-rattled residents of Mineral a benefit concert two years ago, is headed to Fredericksburg this summer.

And, despite the good will his 2012 appearance generated in the region, organizers still need to comply with city ordinances to bring the popular act to the Celebrate Virginia Live summer concert series.

As one of the first acts of Fredericksburg's newly seated council, it is being asked to approve a permit for Seven Hills Presents LLC, the organizer of the outdoor concert.

The Aug. 23 event is expected to draw 8,000 people, including musicians and staff. A city ordinance requires a permit for events with more than 5,000 attendees.

Seven Hills representatives have met with public safety officials and addressed their concerns and will reimburse the city for costs resulting from the event, according to Economic Development and Tourism Director Karen Hedelt, who is recommending council approval of the permit.

Among the issues to be addressed were parking, portable restrooms, crowd and traffic control, medical facilities, structural safety, sound issues and fire safety.

Hedelt noted in her memo to the council that the city will reap financial benefits from the concert through admissions and meals taxes directly tied to the event, plus spending at nearby restaurants, hotels, retailers and service stations.

In May 2012, Jackson gave a concert in Louisa County--where Mineral is located--after the town won an online contest.

The town, with a population of fewer than 500 people, was near the epicenter of a magnitude-5.8 earthquake in August 2011 that shook much of the East Coast and beyond.

Residents were granted free admission while others were charged a ticket price of nearly $50, including all fees. The event raised more than $150,000 to help restore the Louisa County High School.

Tuesday will be the first meeting for council newcomers Tim Duffy and Charlie "Chuck" Frye Jr. Billy Withers returns after an eight-year absence and Councilman Brad Ellis begins a new term after running unopposed in May.

The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of City Hall.

Pamela Gould: 540/735-1972


(c)2014 The Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg, Va.)

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Source: Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg, VA)

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