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Freakfest Billboard On Madison Beltline

October 27, 2007

I was on the beltline in Madison this afternoon and saw a huge billboard promoting Freakfest on State Street for this evening.  I am a bit confused.

From my perspective this event is one that we need to contain, in order to insure that safety is maintained, and costs kept in line with dwindling city budgets.  In other words the ability of the taxpayers to pay for drunken parties should be a priority.

So who paid for the large billboard to promote and lure even more people to an event that taxpayers will foot the bill for?

Might the cost of the billboard have been better used to pay the city for police and emergency protection services?  If a student group paid for this ad then I suggest they talk with some city taxpayers about real world economic realities.   I argue all the time for the best quality of programs and buildings for UW-Madison.  I feel lucky to live in Madison and am glad to pay my taxes, knowing that some of it goes to this fine institution.  But events such as Freakfest should not be the burden of Madison taxpayers.

Last evening at about 11:00 P.M. we were walking with friends down State Street.  In one block alone were 15 police officers.  That was not counting the ones on horseback that walked by, or the personnel that followed picking up horse droppings. 

And taxpayers get to pick up the tab for all this so people can dress up on Halloween and get drunk?

As I said I must be a bit confused.

I might add that thousands of folks attend Concerts On The Square in the summer where the Chamber Orchestra pays for the setup and cleanup each week.  The city is not stuck with the bill!

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Erin permalink
    October 29, 2007 10:26 AM

    I would like to note that I paid $7 to get in, and since 34,000 people were in attendance, I think that might cover the cops, lights, and horse-dropping retrievers. Perhaps the billboard as well. The real issue here is that if there aren’t the public resources (police, for example) then the event will still happen, but with much more damage, violence, and mayhem. Perhaps the taxpayers would prefer that?

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