Big Time Out organizers turn to Ash Berry Farm

The Big Time Out music festival will not be held at Village Park in Cumberland, council decided in a 2-2 vote at a special meeting Tuesday.

The Big Time Out festival will be held at Ash Berry Farm on Royston Road, Cumberland Village Works announced online today.

Farm owners Don and Louisa McClellan recently purchased the Waverley Hotel in Cumberland, where Cumberland Village Works regularly books musicians.

A new location is necessary after Cumberland council denied approval in a 2-2 vote Tuesday night at a special meeting held for council to reconsider its earlier refusal due to security issues. Couns. Kate Greening and Gwyn Sproule voted to allow the festival at Village Park, while Couns. Bronco Moncrief and Leslie Baird were opposed. Mayor Fred Bates did not attend.

Council called the meeting to take a second look at a revised application from Cumberland Village Works, which proposed to remove the beer garden from the Aug. 12 and 13 event. Festival artistic director vig Schulman also proposed to hire supplemental contract security — which would increase the number of people in a security capacity to 130-plus — and to name Bates and the four councillors as additional insured, in addition to the Village.

“Please bring the Big Time Out back to Cumberland where it belongs,” an emotional Schulman said to a resounding applause from about 50 supporters who attended the meeting.

Coun. Kate Greening moved to let the event proceed at Village Park, subject to the amended security plan. She also requested festival organizers to debrief the community at an October meeting.

Coun. Gwyn Sproule seconded the motion, but it was not supported by Couns. Leslie Baird or Bronco Moncrief, who chaired the meeting.

Council is largely concerned about liability.

Last week, council voted unanimously to not allow the annual festival at its usual location at Village Park because police were not able to recommend the event proceeding this year. Bates had said festival organizers failed to submit security and other information required to approve the application in time.

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