Resolution Regarding Overland Park Golf Course
Whereas, Overland Park Golf Course, designated in 1956, is an important part of Denver’s park system, providing affordable and accessible golf to Denver’s citizens continuously since its founding in 1895;
and Whereas, the Hancock Administration proposes to lease Overland Park Golf Course to a commercial promoter for the next five years to hold a music festival that will close the golf course for five weeks during prime golf season every summer;
and Whereas, in 2010 Denver established a policy to govern use of public parks for Admission-based Events, resulting from a collaboration that included input from Denver residents, neighborhood groups and city agencies, which policy the Denver City Attorney reviewed and signed;
and Whereas, the Overland Park Golf Course Festival contract under consideration by City Council greatly exceeds the limits established by the Admission-Based Event (ABE) policy and puts an ABE in a place never contemplated for such activity:
The ABE policy explicitly identifies parks where Admission-based Events are allowed. Overland Pond Park is not one of the parks where Admission-based events are allowed. And this kind of Admission-based event was not even contemplated at Overland Park Golf Course, or any golf course, since golf courses are 100% dedicated to golf and require specialized turf maintenance.
The ABE policy limits closure to the general public to 4 days, including set up and tear down, and it allows only 20% of the grounds to be closed to the public. The proposed festival contract will close Overland Golf Course entirely for 5 weeks during prime golf season every year for 5 years.
The ABE policy limits the maximum attendance of Admission-based events to 7500 persons. The proposed contract anticipates 20,000 – 40,000 attendees every day for 3 days each summer for 5 years.
and Whereas, the proposed Overland Park Golf Course Festival contract, if approved, will render the Admission-based Event Policy meaningless and erode trust both in public process and between the citizens of Denver and the Hancock Administration.
Therefore, City Park Friends and Neighbors resolve:
We urge City Council to comply with the provisions of the Admission-based Event policy and reject the proposal to commit to staging a multi-day music festival in Overland Park Golf Course for the next five years.
We encourage the Hancock Administration to work with the commercial promoter to find a suitable location for their multi-day, multi-year festival in an appropriate venue in the Denver area, not in a public park.
We propose City Council and the Hancock Administration initiate a public process to develop a Denver Festival Park and Event Center to mount commercial music festivals and similar events for the Denver community.
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