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Riot Fest Gets Loud Pushback From Community

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BYERS, Colo. (CBS4)- Tickets are already being sold for Riot Fest, but those who live in the rural community surrounding Byers are saying “Not so fast.”

Hundreds of people packed Tuesday night’s meeting to discuss their concerns with the Arapahoe County Board of Commissioners about the music festival, which will bring thousands of people to the small community.

Hundreds packed a meeting to discuss Riot Fest  near Byers (credit: CBS)

Hundreds packed a meeting to discuss Riot Fest near Byers (credit: CBS)

“Last year we were subjected to 20 hours of abuse by the extreme nonstop noise. If approved this year it will mean more than 30 hours of the same,” said one concerned resident.

Riot Fest is scheduled for three days, Sept. 19-21, at May Farms and will feature rock and punk bands like Slayer, Primus and Weezer.

Last year an estimated 15,000 ticket holders turned out for the concerts. This year that number is expected to grow as organizers have requested more space.

About 2,000 of those attendees would camp in a tent city which would nearly double the population of Byers.

Residents claim that last year’s festival had an adverse impact, including damaged property and businesses and brought an unwelcome element to town. They lined up to make their case at the podium in front of the commissioners.

“One business should not have the right to impede on the rights of our entire community. Please do not pass either permit,” said another concerned resident.

“Riot Fest is and was a travesty. It was annoying and violated issues on so many levels. It is hard to mention them all,” said yet another resident against the festival.

Festival organizers defended their event, stating they have learned from their first year in Byers, calling the event well behaved. They also said the attention is good for the town.

The commissioners are not expected to make a decision on the expanded use permit for some time. They also said more public hearings on the issue may be scheduled.

Until then, Riot Fest organizers said they will continue to sell more tickets.

LINK: Riot Fest

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