2012-07-28 / News

Boosters get bit at All Good

By Scott Rawdon and Charles Prince

THORNVILLE – Lakewood Athletic Boosters raised nearly $10,000 for Lakewood athletes at last weekend’s All Good Music Festival & Campout at Legend Valley. The group also got two administrative citations from the Ohio Division of Liquor Control.

Here’s what happened. Temporary liquor permits, according to Lyn Tolan, communications director for the Ohio Department of Commerce, are only issued to nonprofit organizations. Consequently, the All Good promoter could not qualify. Lakewood Athletic Boosters, who have had two disappointing major ticket drawings in the last two years and are trying to raise thousands for athletic transportation, could and did get a temporary liquor permit for the main stage area.

In return for providing the permit, concert promoters agreed to donate to the Boosters reportedly $10 per hour for every hour Booster volunteers staffed the main stage area beer booths.

Bringing outside alcohol into the main stage area is strictly prohibited according to festival rules. Festival security was responsible for checking fans as they entered the area. Bringing outside liquor into any permitted liquor establishment – in this case the main stage area – is also prohibited by Ohio law.

On two days last weekend, undercover agents with the Ohio Investigative Unit found a fan consuming alcohol that had been illegally brought into the main stage area. As the liquor permit holder, Lakewood Athletic Boosters received two administrative citations just as any liquor permit holder would under the same circumstances.

“The violations didn’t occur anywhere near my people,” said incoming Lakewood Athletic Boosters President Kevin Krier. “My people who worked that event were exemplary.” He said it was really a case of fans sneaking their own alcohol past security into the main stage area.

“It looks bad; it’s two violations too many,” Krier acknowledged. However, Boosters didn’t have the manpower to help with security. “It took everything we had to man our own beer tent,” he said.

Julie Hinds, public information officer for the Ohio Department of Public Safety, said the two violations will be presented to the Liquor Control Commission, whose members can choose to do nothing, impose a fine, temporarily suspend the boosters’ permit, or revoke it entirely. Krier said if the commission imposes a fine, the All Good promoter may cover it since the offenders eluded the venue’s security.

“We made almost $10,000 for our athletes,” said Krier. “I believe it was worth it and I think that if given the opportunity, the boosters would vote to do it again. But, I can’t make that call by myself. Of course, we have several issues that need to be addressed and corrected.”

According to an Ohio Investigative Unit press release, 32 people were cited with alcohol and drug citations for a total of 56 charges during the event. These included 22 for drug possession, 15 for underage drinking or possessing alcohol, six for drug trafficking, two for furnishing alcohol to an underage person, three for drug paraphernalia, two for illegal sales, two for fake IDs, two for resisting arrest, one for attempted purchase of alcohol by an underage person, and one for assaulting an officer.

According to the release, OIU agents seized a large quantity of black tar heroin during one arrest and 90 hits of LSD during a separate arrest. Agents also confiscated drug paraphernalia, moonshine, prescription pills, MDMA and marijuana, among other illegal substances.

Hinds said as a comparison, there are few music festivals in Ohio, two of which are very large – Jamboree In the Hills and the Country Concert at Hickory Hill Lakes. She said in 2011 there were 103 people charged at Jamboree and 117 at Country Concert. This year there were 82 people charged at Jamboree and 67 at Country Concert.

“Something to take into account is weather plays a huge role and so does crowd size and who is performing,” she said. “I don’t remember what last year’s weather was like, but I can tell you that during Country Concert this year (July 5 - 7) the temperatures were well into the high 90s, if not 100 degrees. The first day of the concert was not as hot, we charged 25 people. From what I am being told the rest of the weekend was pretty bad and not many were drinking alcohol.”

According to an Ohio State Highway Patrol release, troopers had a busy weekend as Criminal Patrol Units with the patrol conducted a high-visibility criminal patrol tactical squad throughout Licking County from July 19 - 22 in an effort to remove criminal activity from the roadways.

Troopers focused their attention on I-70 and US 40, Ohio 79 and Ohio 37 throughout the effort, which proved to be highly successful, resulting in 361 traffic stops, 45 motorist assists, and 171 warnings.

In addition troopers made 40 felony drug arrests and 67 misdemeanor drug arrests. These arrests include the seizure of marijuana, cocaine, illegal prescription medications, hashish, psilocybin mushrooms, acid, and drug paraphernalia.

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