LJWorld.com weblogs Lawrence in the News

Comparing security at Wakarusa, Bonnaroo


¢ A columnist for the [Tufts Daily][1], the newspaper at Tufts University, contrasts law enforcement at the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival to what happened last summer at Lawrence's Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival._ In many ways, despite the torturous environment, the (Bonnaroo) festival grounds are utopian. Unlike every other large-scale American music festival, Bonnaroo takes place on private property. This confines law enforcement to the one paved service road on site, and relegates them to the position of general peacekeeper rather than that of a fascist underage-drinking watch.Last summer at Wakarusa, a similar festival in Lawrence, Kansas, law enforcement agencies arrested or expelled 144 festival-goers due to heavy patrolling. At Bonnaroo, well, let's just say that didn't happen._¢ Bill Lacy, director of the Dole Institute of Politics at KU, asks the question, "What's the Matter with Washington?" with an essay in the February/March issue of the [Ripon Forum][2], a Republican Party publication.¢ [BoomerGirl.com][3], the new Lawrence-based Web site dedicated to women of the Baby Boom generation, is garnering attention from media across the country. The media mentions include the [CBS Early Show][4], [Los Angeles Times/Washington Post wire service][5] and the [Boston Herald][6]. The Web site is owned by The World Company, which also owns the Lawrence Journal-World.An excerpt from the LA Times/Washington Post story: _The site grew out of a Kansas woman's weekly column on her own midlife misadventures and the challenges and humorous happenings of being a female over 50. Cathy Hamilton, who wrote Boomer Girl Diary for a local paper, was surprised when she searched for similar content online and found little."My kids are all over Facebook and MySpace, which offer relevant content and a community experience for teens and twenty-somethings," says Hamilton, 51. "I wanted to find the same thing for women my age, but there really wasn't much out there." Hamilton took her idea for a Web site geared toward middle-aged women to the marketing folks at her paper. They saw the potential and helped get the project up and running._¢ Lawrence's Indoor Aquatic Center is praised in an article in today's [Des Moines Register][7]. A physician who is the focus of a feature says she wishes Des Moines would build a "first-class facility for competitive swimming, similar to the Lawrence (Kan.) Indoor Aquatic Center." [1]: http://media.www.tuftsdaily.com/media/storage/paper856/news/2007/02/20/Arts/Mikey.Goralnik.Paint.The.Town.Brown-2730189.shtml [2]: http://riponsoc.org/ [3]: www.boomergirl.com [4]: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/02/17/earlyshow/saturday/main2490139.shtml [5]: http://www.spokesman.com/business/story.asp?ID=175120 [6]: http://theedge.bostonherald.com/lifeNews/view.bg?articleid=183680 [7]: http://desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070220/NEWS/702200358/1125


nekansan 11 years, 4 months ago

Also from the article...

"Picture the hottest, muddiest plot of land in the continental United States, then fill every square inch of it with people ranging from the scummiest acid casualty to the most upstanding live music columnist. Next, imagine what happens when you don't stabilize this environment with enough restrooms, charge too much for food and water and fling open the doors to hordes of young capitalists offering, among other things, "headies," "pharmies" and "boomers." Then let some of the acid casualties bring and lose their mutt dogs, and let these starved beasts rummage through your campsite for food. Then have it rain. This is more or less the Bonnaroo aesthetic."

Thankfully, Wakarusa is also not like Bonaroo in this respect. The organizers do a great job of providing facilites and safety to the festival attendees.

ModerateOne 11 years, 4 months ago

After hearing so many complaints about how harsh law enfocement was at the Wakarusa fest last year and hearing so many complaints about how law enforcement doesn't do enough at Last Call, it would be interesting to see the LJW do a calculation of the number of people hurt/injured at Wak Fest vis a vis Last Call.

Seems to me that Wak Fest has more deaths than Last Call in the last few years.

Does this mean that predominantly white crowds who engage in dangerous behaviors are somehow better than predominantly black crowds who engage in dangerous behaviors?

Or, more likely, perhaps this means that some of you open minded people aren't so open minded after all?

nekansan 11 years, 3 months ago

I'd certainly like to see statistics regarding the number of guns seized from patrons of both events. Furthermore; while there was a death at Wakarusa, is was related to a drug overdose and in no way endangered others at the event. I'd certainly welcome a comparison of occurances of violence at each, particularly on a per capita basis. I think in all of these metrics we would find Wakarusa to be a much safer place. I'd also enjoy a comparison of underage drinking/illegal drug possesion numbers numbers at both Wakarusa and Last Call.

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