Friday, May 24, 2013
By Bob Keyes firstname.lastname@example.org
PORTLAND – City officials will meet Thursday to discuss the possibility of hosting another major concert on the Eastern Promenade, in the wake of a music festival that drew as many as 16,000 people to the city park Saturday.
City officials will debrief Thursday on Saturday's Mumford & Sons concert on the Eastern Prom, which drew 16,000 people.
Derek Davis/Staff Photographer
A crew from National Rent-A-Fence stacks for transport the last 1,300 feet of fencing used for Saturday’s Mumford & Sons concert on the Eastern Prom. The company, from Southborough, Mass., used 5,800 feet of fencing for the show.
Gordon Chibroski / Staff Photographer
Promoter Lauren Wayne and Mayor Michael Brennan gave the "Gentlemen of the Road Stopover" featuring Mumford & Sons high marks during interviews backstage Saturday.
Wayne said she hoped the city would look favorably on a show in the future.
City spokeswoman Nicole Clegg said the formal process of evaluating the festival will begin Thursday, when department heads gather to discuss the good, the bad and the ugly of the daylong musical extravaganza.
"It will be an opportunity for all the department heads to sit together in one room to say what they thought worked and what we would want to improve upon if we ever do it again," Clegg said Monday. "But people are pleased. Certainly there are things there that we will look to improve on. But there were no major incidents, no arrests."
But not everybody was pleased.
Karen Synder, a property owner on nearby Munjoy Hill, sent a scathing email to city officials, the neighborhood association and the media with photos of trash and damage on the prom. "This is NOT the venue for a private concert," she wrote.
Another resident, Rachel Lyn Rumson, complained in an email to the Portland Press Herald about public urination, broken glass and general mayhem.
"The grass is ripped up with plastic cups, glass bottles and litter as far as the eye can see, and now I feel like the Indian with a tear on that old commercial," Rumson wrote.
Clegg said those and other concerns will be addressed at Thursday's meeting.
The cleanup of the Eastern Prom continued Monday. Some damaged areas of the lawn will have to be reseeded, Clegg said, noting that the concert promoters will pay the expense of cleaning up the hillside and fixing any damage in the park.
Wayne could not be reached Monday. She said Saturday that she hoped to arrange another concert or festival in the park. She did not offer any specifics or time frame.
Brennan said the show was "exactly the type of event we want to have in Portland," citing the park's location on Casco Bay and the Eastern Prom's natural amphitheater, which creates favorable sight lines and acoustics.
Overall, Clegg said, the mood in City Hall was upbeat Monday.
"We had some complaints. There's a newness to it, so everyone has some questions. But we've gotten a lot of positive feedback," she said.
Staff Writer Bob Keyes can be contacted at 791-6457 or at: