News: 1999-04.17-Antioch-Opposition

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From: Bill Watters  
To: Subject: RPFN Update.. 
Date: Fri, 16 Apr 1999 08:04:51 -0700 

Having attend last nights meeting in Antioch, I'd definitely say that there is a sizable and very loud oppossition to faire coming to town.

The most relevant thing for our lives is the announement made by REC that they've decided as of Wednesday night to do a complete environmental impact report instead of the apparently extremely abbriviated version they had been going to have done up (this all in result to the 50+ protestors that showed up to a city planning meeting earlier in the week). End result, Northerns dates have now gone soft and they weren't sure if they'd be able to do one this season now at all.

For thems that want the quotes, I'm working on converting a recording I made of the meeting to streaming audio, I'll email when that's in place if the audio conversion comes through clear enough.

Of the about 300-500 people that were there (enough to fill to capacity a large cafeteria at a high school to heavily standing room only) and 6 police (it never really got out of hand physically at all, just loud), there was about 30% pro (including many pro residents), 40% against, and the remainder somewhere in the middle. The polar groups however were both loud, passionate, and fanatical.

REC's claims of little to no police problems on site were hit early on with one fellow appearing with a fairly extensive rap sheet for calls made to Northern for a wide array of issues from sexual assault / theft / abduction / stalking / etc. So unfortunately it brought some doubt to the cheery claims made by the REC folks early on. But other speaking in favor of the faire made some arguments that brought some very loud cheers as well.

I was amazed however when the magic & witchcraft complaints started up [again] (inc. Tarot Card, readings, etc.). Sounds like my old dear Midwest and not what I'd had expected in California, but there they were (with a thunderous cheer afterwards by supporters of this notion) stating they didn't want their children exposed to such evils. Cheers to Linda Underhill for handling the response to him - I would not have wanted to be any of the folks up there at the front of the room for anything.

The criminal element faire brings with it, condoms passed out to faire employes, drinking, property devaluation for homeowners, etc you name it, they dreamt it up, but unfortunately they had enough supporting materials for some of it to shed doubt in some of the fence sitters to make them wonder about how up and up REC was being.

The main issue of the night bar none, Traffic (which I happen to agree with). It'll be their main sticking block if anything is in the end. The road just isn't really meant for that kind of load, and life for the residents will suck during those 8 weekends. But that'll end up being the main one.

Possibly more later, but that's what comes to mind first off...