Denying approval for Big Time Out makes no sense

Dear editor,
I just had a bit of a shock: Cumberland Village Council recently denied The Big Time Out's permit to hold the festival in Cumberland Village Park, the festival's home for the past seven years.
This really doesn't make sense to me.

Dear editor,I just had a bit of a shock: Cumberland Village Council recently denied The Big Time Out’s permit to hold the festival in Cumberland Village Park, the festival’s home for the past seven years.This really doesn’t make sense to me.Your community is needing young people — not kids, but people aged 25 to 45 with families, businesses, energy, and creativity — to invest in it.I often work outside the Comox Valley, with people in this demographic. What do they know about the Comox Valley?It’s the location for Big Time Out. I know people who’ve moved here because of their BTO experience.Big Time Out is a huge part of Cumberland’s positive image within the Comox Valley — and particularly outside of it. The young people who will be the future of Cumberland (and the Comox Valley) see it as the premier music festival of its kind in B.C. and Pacific Northwest. The impact of this event is significant. It attracts exactly the kind of people Cumberland (and the Comox Valley generally) need to thrive — maybe even to survive: young families, businesses, and investors.We’ve got looming financial issues in the region, and Cumberland particularly.Our population is aging. We have huge infrastructure upgrades needed. Our “industrial strength” jobs have largely disappeared, and the service/retail sector is not replacing those jobs or dollars.Our region needs the kind of energy and image that Big Time Out presents to a younger generation in the outside world.The economic stimulus that Big Time Out represents needs to be acknowledged and supported. You’ve got a jewel here, one that many small communities envy.I want to see it stay, because I want to see the benefits come to Cumberland, and then trickle down the mountain to the rest of us here in Comox Valley. We need them.Cumberland council, please reconsider your decision to ban the festival from Cumberland Village Park. I look forward to hearing from you.Hans Peter Meyer,Courtenay

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