City Parks report finds no major problems with Territory Days, refers alcohol question to Special Events Committee

       A City Parks report on Territory Days recommends no major changes in the annual three-day street festival in Old Colorado City, but does call for the city's Special Events Committee to look into certain aspects of it.
       One of these is sales of alchohol by the event-sponsoring Old Colorado City Associates (OCCA) merchants group.
       Police Sgt. Bob Weber, a co-chair of the committee (with Bob Stovall of the City Manager's Office) said he expects the group to take up the issue at its November meeting. Stovall added later that any consideration will also be done in conjunction with a “revamping” of how the city handles special-event permits, such as the one obtained for Territory Days each year.
       Written by Aimee Cox of City Parks, the report summarizes that there have been four public meetings on Territory Days concerns since April 2006, with the most recent in August. “Resident concerns have been generally the same - traffic, trash, noise, inconvenience, risk and liability,” Cox notes, adding that “while most participants at the meeting on August 16, 2007, agreed that additional parking enforcement and trash patrol improved the event overall, there are still many residents who would like to see the event relocated to a less congested area of town. It is unlikely that any minor adjustments to the event will ever bring the two sides together.”
       She recommends the Special Events Committee take charge of the issue because it “is versed in event logistics and has the authority to impose conditions on event organizers. Should the Territory Days event change significantly in size or scope, additional public meetings would be warranted.”
       Regarding the alcohol issue, Cox writes, “Citizen concerns about the two drinking areas (a beer garden and a margarita cantina) merit further review by the City's Special Events Committee and Old Colorado City Associates. With alcohol available at many permanent establishments within the event boundaries, some residents questioned the need for two additional temporary drinking areas. The Special Event Committee should review whether the added facilities pose a significant threat to public safety, and OCCA should evaluate whether or not their member businesses would be better served by directing drinkers into permanent establishments.”
       Lynda Dunne of Colorado Main Events, the festival organizer, said that there have been very few problems at the OCCA's alcohol areas during Territory Days over the years.
       At the August meeting, Weber expressed the belief that because off-duty police officers monitor those areas for drunkenness, they are well handled.
       Two other matters that Cox's report specifically refers to the Special Events Committee are ensuring that no-parking signs continue to be posted on 28th Street between Colorado Avenue and Cucharras Street (to ensure access for a nearby business) and considering any other parking changes (such as private parking permits in the neighborhoods, which would require the City Attorney's Office to get involved).

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