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Snow Ball wants to return to Avon

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AVON – Promoters of the Snow Ball music festival want to come back to Avon next year. That idea brought mixed reviews at Tuesday’s meeting of the Avon Town Council.

The promoters, represented by Chad Donnelly and Scott Stoughton, said the three-day festival in March was an unqualified success from their perspective. Business owners praised the festival, too.

Ricardo Aragon, general manager of Fiesta Jalisco in town, said the restaurant was 100 percent staffed for the three-day event.



“We didn’t even do that over Christmas or Easter,” Aragon said. That full staff meant more than 20 local households benefitted, he said.

Brian Kolzow, co-owner of High Mountain Taxi, said his company ran every vehicle it had in the valley 24 hours per day over the three-day event. Kolzow also said his drivers had few problems with traffic and fewer problems with drunken riders than they do on a normal weekend.



And Donnelly’s PowerPoint presentation indicated that concert-goers from outside the valley spent an average of nearly $300 each while they were in town.

Jake Wolf, the music teacher at Avon Elementary School, praised the festival organizers for providing educational opportunities to local kids, including putting more than 100 students on stage to open the festival with Bonfire Dub.

But neighbors complained about drug use and noise from the festival.



“We had the opportunity to have a wonderful event, but it turned out to be a drug fest,” Phil Struve said. “We need special events, but it needs to be limited to family and sporting events.

“You need to take account of what the citizens think. The ones I’ve talked to think it was a large mistake.”

Steve Wood, president of the Beaver Bench condominiums’ homeowners’ association, has submitted a bill for more than $1,700 to the town, seeking compensation for money spent on extra security. The SunRidge condo association has submitted a similar bill.

“We actually had no problems with the event itself except for the noise,” Wood said.

After the meeting, Wood said that Nottingham Park simply isn’t the right place in town for an event with that much amplified sound, adding he was able to hear the music that weekend from both Eagle-Vail and Edwards.

In the wake of the event, several residents have complained about the noise, talking about everything from rattling windows to sound that knocked hanging pictures off level.

Avon resident Michael Cacioppo said he sympathized with Struve and other neighbors.

“I wouldn’t want to listen to blasting music all day long if I lived around the lake, so I understand that point of view,” Cacioppo said. “But you’ve got a large majority of people that it worked for, and you’ve got a small group it didn’t work for with legitimate complaints.”

And the Town Council hasn’t yet made any decisions whether or not to invite the Snow Ball back for another run. Promoters will probably send a proposal to town officials in the next few weeks.

Council member Dave Dantas said if the town does host the event again, he wants to answer questions about keeping guests safe, keeping drug use to a minimum, trespassing and noise.

“That noise was going through everything,” Dantas said.

Stoughton said promoters can look at other communities that host large events – such as Morrison, home of Red Rocks Amphitheater – and look at how those communities handle those events.

That process will start this spring.


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