Monday, January 21, 2008


If you have questions or need additional information, please email us @ or call us at 856-696-2503

The residents of East Vineland were particularly upset because without any fore-warning or advanced knowledge Mayor Perry Barse proposed a Rock Concert in our neighborhood disguised as a Carnival. It was done this way so that it would fit into a section of the land use ordinance where the residents would not have an opportunity to voice their concerns and have their views heard. By proposing it through a "Carnival Ordinance", it was not necessary for the Mayor to obtain the Zoning or Planning Boards approval. This way, it was only subject to Mayor Barse's approval and rubber stamped by his chosen City Council Members.

If you would like to sign our PETITION please email us or go to 1450 E. Chestnut Ave., Build. 1, Suite C at the Acme Shopping Center.(this is the building with the blue metal roof) between the hours of 10:30am - 4:30pm.


Sunday, January 20, 2008

Upcoming Meetings and Information

- The city is seeking approval to utilize 10 acres of a 232 acre parcel that is currently protected under the Green Acres Program and listed on the City of Vineland’s Recreation and Open Space Inventory of properties held for recreation and conservation purposes. They want to use 10 acres on 3361 Mayslanding Rd. (Block 7801, Lot 17 / formerly Block 1143, Lot 2) for police training purposes.

There is a training facility there now which has a shooting range that can be heard from miles away. At the meeting on 3-27-08 Captain J. Lauria told me that current shooting practice takes place bi-annually (2x a year) to qualify for shotguns and handguns and quarterly(4x a year) for rifles and a 3 day training session 2x a year, night training is also required in the Spring and Fall for every officer. These amounts are very misleading; you would think that the training only takes place 12x a year, but many of you who live in the area know it happens much more frequently than that. They want to expand the 20 shooting lanes that they already have to 30 lanes and increase the length from 50 yards to 100 yards. More shooting will take place but Capt. Lauria said it would be for shorter periods of time. My fear is that with the increase in lanes and length, more municipalities will want to come to our location and practice. The noise from the gun shots and especially the rifles going off sound like machine guns firing and this can be heard from 2 miles away inside your home with the windows closed.

I feel that the city should not be permitted to take land away from a protected piece for any reason. That is why it is protected. If we allow this to happen, what will be next? It was also told to me at the meeting by the City Assistant Business Administrator, Denise Monaco, that the police training facility was never approved by Green Acres when it was built. Green Acres was not even aware that there was a training facility there until the Vineland Police Department asked to make it bigger.

The City offers to propose replacement land to be dedicated as parkland to compensate for the proposed diversion of parkland. I was told at the meeting that they must give back 5x the amount that they are taking and it must be the same assessed value. The replacement property does not have to be all together. It can be scattered all over the city. I was also told that the city does not own 50 acres of comparable land to make the swap so they will most likely have to buy it outright. How much will 50 acres of wooded uplands cost the city(taxpayers)??? This land was intended for Conservation purposes. Giving a replacement 50 acre piece scattered throughout Vineland, will not be where it was intended to be and will cost the city an enormous amount of money.

The next Vineland City Council Meeting will be on Tuesday 4-22-08 @ 7:00pm at City Hall, 2nd floor. We are not asking everyone to attend, however you may join us if you like. VMF – No word as of yet, but we are still attending all City Council Meetings. We are also starting to attend the Work Session meetings for City Council and are finding that public input is neither easily given nor very welcome. Hopefully we can change this by allowing more public input throughout the meetings instead of just in the beginning when the agenda is not very transparent to the general public.

You can view every City Council Meeting live the night of the meeting at 7:30 pm on Channel 13, or you can watch the re-play on the Friday following the meeting at 9:00 pm on Channel 13. I strongly encourage anyone who can not make the meeting in person to watch the televised portion so that you can keep up with what is going on in our city. I also suggest that you go to and download a copy of the agenda before the meeting so that you can see and understand what is being discussed. Be cautious, I have been told that just because an item is not on the agenda does not mean it can not be addressed at the Council meeting. There is an additional half hour work session before every Council meeting and an issue can be brought up then and later discussed at that Council meeting. It seems that a lot of things are getting passed in Vineland because no one is watching. I say we change that!

March 6, 2008 Don’t throw your signs away yet!!!!
We recently met with Melvin Benn (The Festival Republic) and Charlie Jones (C3 Presents), the promoters of the proposed Vineland Music Festival and they were quick to advise us that if the same political administration is in place after the May election, they intend to go forward with the concert in June 2009 at the original proposed site.

We declined the invitation to visit their concert in the United Kingdom and Austin, Texas feeling it would put us in a position of being compromised.

We all need to keep our attention on this and be prepared for an all out fight to stop this in the event the current administration is re-elected.

January 25, 2008 - I guess you have all heard the great news, the concert has been canceled for this August. HURRAY!!!! Who says you can't fight City Hall , we did and we won, for now. We all should be very proud that we stood up for what was right. Someone recently said to me "when people say nothing, bad things can happen" and that is just what the Barse Team was counting on. They are still saying that it is on the table for June 09. That means we still have our work cut out for us but we have time to plan it better. We need to close the loop hole that the current administration opened with the "Carnival Ordinance". We also have to remember that our current administration did not care about us, our children, our property values or our well-being and elect a new mayor this May. One who will support us and be willing to take a stand on what is best for all of Vineland .

Our web site will stay up and running as will this email address. Please continue to contact us with information and/or concerns. We will continue to attend City Council meetings on a regular basis and so should you. I think it is very important to keep up with what is going on in our town. It is certainly scary how quickly our town could change.

If anyone is interested in getting involved in a government watch group please let us know. They have one in Millville and Fairton and have done a lot of good. I think everyone should have to answer to someone, especially our elected officials. It is a lot of work getting involved but as you can see, it is worth it sometimes.

**We are asking that everyone please return all signed petitions to Maintree Office Center , FCC 1450 E. Chestnut Ave. , Bldg. 1, Suite C so that we can keep them on file for now. We will need them in the future and it is best if we have them all together. Also, everyone who has our signs, please keep them for now and we will re-use them in the future. If you would like to return them, you can bring them to 1450 E. Chestnut Ave.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

9 Reasons Why we are Against the Rock Concert Site (Summary of 28 Reasons)

Email -
Phone – 856-696-2503

1. Proposed site is unable to handle the large traffic volume –
- residential/agricultural neighborhood with rural roads
- size of crowd is unpredictable even if ticket sales are limited, there is no guarantee that thousands more won’t show up trying to camp around the area to listen
- In addition, there will be a Nightmare Traffic Jam on Route 55 due to:
- Concert attendees
- Thunderbolt Raceway Grand opening
- Shore Traffic heading to and from for the weekend

2. Weather is unpredictable
- hot and dry conditions in August creates fire hazard
- if rains – impossible to park

3. East Vineland is major Farming Community
- creates complete disruption to farmers livelihood

4. East Vineland Properties will be devalued
- creates major difficulty for residents to sell their homes

5. Local Taxpayers will be burdened with the added expense incurred for EMT’s, Police and Firefighters
- promoter Melvin Benn’s track record shows that he has refused to pay in excess of $600,000 for direct costs associated with the Leeds, England festival.
- promoters have provided inconsistent information regarding the number of arrests, riots, injuries, deaths, damage to property as well as for paying all additional costs related to the event

6. East Vineland Residents should not have to endure major disruption
- we purchased property in the area because it is rural and for quite enjoyment
- promoter Melvin Benn indicated set-up would begin (6) weeks prior to event
- attendees will show up early to get a good location
- noise control regulations will be waived and music will continue through 3AM

7. Hospital Access will be severely impaired for local residents
- Sherman Ave. is a direct access road for both the hospital and concert site
- concert attendees who overindulge in alcohol/drugs or suffer injuries, heat stroke, etc. will need care

8. We were never consulted or involved with the planning of this event. It was made public after plans were already made without public input.

9. The Elwyn Institute (owner of the Menantico Colony – The Vineland Rock Concert site) is being motivated solely by a desire for monetary and/or material gain by selling our neighborhood out to a rock concert venue.

Friday, January 18, 2008

28 Reasons why we are opposed to the rock concert site

Phone: 856-696-2503 Email:


2. The SIZE of the CROWD is UNPREDICTABLE. Promoter Melvin Benn started off saying “inaugural expected audience of 10,000 to 20,000 people” (The Daily Journal Nov. 2007) Then, quickly increased the number of people to 50,000 when confronted with an article by a co-promoter indicating at least 150,000 people in attendance (see Phil. Inq. article dated 11/28/07).

3. Even if ticket sales are limited, the music will be able to be heard from a large area surrounding the site. People may believe they can come and stop anywhere to camp out and listen to the music. Groups of friends may get together to create “party groups”

4. The NUMBER of ATTENDEES unwilling to purchase a ticket or unable to be accommodated on site, may be so OVERWHELMING that they park and camp anywhere, especially in the farm fields along the roadways – trampling and damaging produce and pillaging the fields for food.

5 WEATHER is UNPREDICTABLE. If it rains, parking becomes impossible. If high temperature and/or dry conditions, there is a potential for disaster if a camp fire ignites the surrounding woodlands.

6. FARMERS who need to use the roads to access fields and take products to the Auction BLOCK could be trapped for ATLEAST (3) DAYS – possibly MORE.

7. Our PROPERTIES will be DEVALUED by any purchaser who would be interested in buying. This will ultimately result in lower assessments and additional tax burdens on the rest of the City’s properties.

8. If it is allowed to occur, what is to prevent other concert promoters from using this or their other location on a more frequent basis? Elwyn has another large site that could be used for similar activities (bordered by Landis Ave, Spring Rd, Chestnut and Main Roads). If this is financially beneficial to Elwyn - Why wouldn’t they?

9. DISRUPTION to the entire EAST VINELAND area for AT LEAST a WEEK – probably longer every year. To set up the site, the promoter stated they may even start (6) weeks in advance plus each band may possibly have 3+ tractor trailers of equipment in addition to their motor homes.

10. The SITE is UNDEFENSIBLE with miles of frontage on Sherman Avenue; Mays Landing Road and Panther Road providing access to the site by people from these areas.

11. The stream and lake on the site is the headwater of the Wild and Scenic River. The concert will disrupt the natural habitat.

12. RURAL ROADS are unable to handle the large traffic volume and the roads around Route 55 and 47 (Delsea Drive) were overloaded with traffic jams just with our own local Christmas traffic.

13. SUMMER SHORE TRAFFIC on ROUTE 55 both going to and coming back from the shore creates an overflow of traffic

14. THUNDERBOLT RACEWAY GRAND OPENING is the same weekend with an estimated crowd of 10,000 to 20,000 people.

15. With the RACEWAY OPENING, the Millville Police Dept. will be busy in Millville and the Sherriff’s Dept will probably be needed as well.

16. The VPD has never had to deal with a 50K+ crowd, which could possibly grow to over 150K+ “party-goers” for a (3) day period. This is just too risky.

17. HOSPITAL ACCESS for most Vineland areas as well as Milmay, Dorothy and Port Elizabeth will be severely impaired due to the increase in traffic. SHERMAN Ave. is a DIRECT ACCESS road to both the HOSPITAL and CONCERT site.

18. Our HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM is NOT EQUIPPED to handle large crowds. With a normal case load, it is not unusual for the ER to have a several hour wait.

19. The promoters have already cost the taxpayers money by occupying the staff of City Hall’s time. We will need to have EXTRA EMT’s, POLICE and FIREMEN. We local taxpayers will have to pay for any extra expense.

20. The same promoters that claim they pick-up all the extra costs have REFUSED paying a $600,000 bill and have went to court to avoid paying for same in Leeds, England (see Rioting at Leeds Festival Article at How can we possibly calculate the REAL COST of providing services, let alone the cost to property owners in the reduced value of their homes that they purchased specifically in the area for a place of quiet enjoyment?

21. If the concert is permitted and is financially successful, which I believe the promoters will be, then it will return every year with a LARGER and LARGER crowd.

22. All REGULATIONS regarding NOISE CONTROL will be waived for the Promoters. The NOISE will go on until 3AM. Local residents who live here and pay taxes to support the government would not be allowed to do this - a total disrespect of neighbors.

23. Alcohol beverages will be sold.

24. Great potential for Drug Sales and Gang Involvement.

25. Gangs have become an increasing problem in our County. The rival gangs may compete for the drug business. Police contribute approximately 85% of local crime to drug related activities.

26. This is a total disrespect of our homes, land and security.

27. The Promoters have provided Inconsistent information regarding the number of arrests, riots, injuries, deaths, damage to property as well as paying for all additional costs related to the event.
28. We were never consulted or involved with the planning of this event. It was made public AFTER plans were already made WITHOUT PUBLIC INPUT.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Links and Articles on promoter Melvin Benn and other festivals

Below is a list of some articles found on the web and their links so that you may read and pass along to others information regarding Promoter Melvin Benn and other festivals that he organizes (Leeds and Reading Festivals in England, Austin City Limits Music Festival held in Texas, etc) along with information on other similar style festivals organized by other promoters. If you have other websites to add, please let us know.

Melvin Benn’s Refusal to pay for costs incurred following 2003 Leeds Festival Rioting:

Melvin Benn’s first statement that the Vineland Festival will have “an expected audience of 10,000 to 20,000 people”:

Contradictory statement by partner of Melvin Benn’s: “Over three days, a crowd of 150,000 or more is expected . . . at the camping festival”.

Leeds Rock Festival 2005 Aftermath and related videos, Leeds Festival Riots:

Leeds Rock Festival ends in ‘sustained, mindless violence’ – Published: 08/27/02:
“They burnt two toilet blocks, attacked police with missiles . . . pulled down electric cables before 200 officers, many in riot gear, managed to stop them . . . the violence involved several hundred people.” At the Leeds Festival with 50,000 attendees there were 200 crimes recorded, 20 people arrested, 51 drug offenses. At Reading with 80,000 attendees “50 people were arrested and about 500 crimes reported, ranging from theft to public order offenses. There were 234 drug seizures . . .

The night one of the world’s great rock festivals turned to tragedy – Published: 07/02/2000, “where eight fans were crushed and trampled to death and scores injured . . . “

TDOT and THP Gear Up for Manchester’s 2007 Bonnaroo Music Festival, June 8, 2007. At least 80,000 expected. “State Troopers on the job 24 hours a day . . . both on the ground and in the air, using helicopters . . . “During Bonnaroo 2006, Troopers logged over 6,400 man-hours” (If Vineland Festival is permitted, we local taxpayers will ultimately have to pay for all these extra expenses.)

Bonnaroo Festival – City Details: Manchester, TN has a population of 7,000 people with INTERSTATE HIGHWAY 24 access to the 700-acre plantation. The City of Vineland has 65,000+ people with NO Interstate Highway access to the proposed site. We have only rural roads that in no way can accommodate the

Live Review by Jason Crock (06/29/06) of the 2006 Bonnaroo Festival. “You will pay four dollars for a limp slice of pizza . . . And you will be solicited for any illicit substance you can think of by merely standing around. . . . “,but getting f*cked up seemed like job one to the fans, and seeing music was second. Take that into account, and hangovers, 90-degree heat, inevitable detours . . . “

Crowd Management Strategies: Eleventh Rock Concert Safety Survey for 2002.
Quick View: 20 deaths due to crowd safety – this does not include deaths for unknown causes or causes not proven to be related to event safety 4,567+ injuries, 2,683+ arrests/citations, $542,000+ Property Damage at (31) Concerts/Festivals
“Please note: Each Rock Concert Safety Survey lists only a sampling of the most dangerous events of the previous year. If data on all known deaths, injuries, property damage costs and arrests were made public, the statistics for these categories would be higher.” ht

The New York Times: ’69 or ’99, a Rock Festival Is a Combustible Mix: 08/08/99: “burning, looting and youth-gone-wild marauding”:

16 Year Old Raped in her tent at the Reading Music Festival