A nationally known music promoter is hoping to bring a three-day music festival to Vineyard Haven that could feature the likes of Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, Alison Krauss, George Clinton & P Funk and Earth, Wind & Fire.
Adam Epstein, CEO of Innovation Arts & Entertainment, is seeking permission from Tisbury selectmen to hold the concert over three days at Veterans Memorial Park on a date still to be determined next summer. Epstein said the concerts would have a capacity of 6,000 customers each day, with separate events covering an eclectic mix of music.
None of the performers have been booked, so the lineup is conceptual and will depend on availability once the event gets the greenlight, Epstein said.
Selectmen were open to the music festival idea, voting 2-0, with selectman Melinda Loberg listening in remotely by phone but unable to vote, to endorse the project subject to a long list of questions and concerns being addressed, which include requiring a bond to protect the field and seeking a portion of the concert proceeds.
A stage would be trucked in over plywood to protect the field, Epstein said. The first night would feature an outdoor showing of “Jaws,” with the Cape Cod Symphony expressing interest in performing the classic Vineyard film’s haunting score.
The other days would feature a list of performers on Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 8 pm, with food and beverage concessions on site. The daily fee would be about $100, with the Friday night event at about $10 to $15 per person, Epstein said.
“I’m totally in favor of this, but want to make sure the town gets something out of it,” selectman Jim Rogers said.
Epstein said there would be a lot of marketing and promotion that would bring a lot of people to town, enhancing the reputation of the town. “They go to restaurants, they walk along Main Street, they go to shops and buy products from people who own businesses on Main Street,” he said.
Chairman Tristan Israel asked Rogers, Loberg, and the town’s public safety chiefs to gather questions and get them to town administrator Jay Grande over the next 10 days so the subject can be discussed at the board’s next meeting, Jan. 8.
Meanwhile, Grande is going to consult with the town’s attorney.
“There’s a lot I want to learn before I say, ‘Yahoo, let’s go,’” Rogers said.
House renovations on hold
Selectmen put off a decision on what to do about renovations at 29 Franklin St. that have failed to follow the conditions put on the project by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission and the planning board.
Harold Chapdelaine, chairman of the historic commission, told the board that there were several problems with the renovations, including the use of Azec PVC on the trim of the building. The historic house was supposed to use only wood, he said.
Instead of making the homeowners remove the plastic-based products and ship them to a landfill, the commission is proposing that the homeowners make a contribution to the commission that could be used to create a database of historic homes older than 100 years old in town, Chapdelaine said.
Selectmen held off making a decision until Grande could also run that agreement before the town’s attorney and bring it back on Jan. 8. Board members thanked Chapdelaine for being a “watchdog” on having projects comply with what’s been approved.