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Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors discusses new ordinances for larger music festivals

Updated: Jun. 16, 2021 at 1:02 PM EDT
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CHATHAM, Va. (WDBJ) - As the four-day Blue Ridge Rock Festival is set to bring in crowds that are larger than Pittsylvania County has ever seen, the county Board of Supervisors must adjust.

“Basically, because of some upcoming festivals that have been scheduled here, we have realized that our ordinances haven’t been updated in several decades, and there hasn’t been a reason to update them because there hasn’t been any large music festivals.” said Caleb Ayers, Pittsylvania County Public Information Officer.

Prior to the Blue Ridge Amphitheater taking over the old White Mountain site, music festivals would see an average of thousand guests. However for the upcoming rock festival, more than 20,000 guest are expected.

“To make sure they can proceed safely and efficiently, for without compromising anyone’s safety, whether that be the landowners living nearby or the people going to the events,” said Ayers.

The county has hosted a number of meetings in the past, hearing concerns from residents about how the roads could handle that anticipated amount of traffic.

“That’s where planning comes in; we will be working with the department of transportation, the state police, whatever plans the organizers submit that those organizations sign off and say yes, this is acceptable,” said Ayers.

After Tuesday night’s meeting if the Board approves the new ordinances, next week they’ll vote on whether to grant permits for the festival.

Still the county says it’s not trying to stop the festival from happening; its goal is for it to be safe as possible.

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