Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hermosa Concert Series: "No good deed goes unpunished"

5,000 people on the beach.
Great bands. Great people.
Awesome sponsors that make it happen.
No city funds.

For those that don't know, Saint Rocke produces the concert series on the beach in Hermosa Beach during the summers. After the City cancelled them due to budget limitations, we took on the burden and made it happen. And for those that think it's easy, it's not. Especially in Hermosa Beach, crown city of gadflies. So when we finished the concert series this last weekend on a high note - 4 great shows of original music, great attendance, no problems, etc. - I thought too good to be true. Nobody had a problem in this city? No Jim Lissner crying foul on beach drinking? No Longacre screaming bloody murder on noise concerns? Sweet......Wrong.

Got a letter this morning from a 'concerned citizen' that was extremely upset at the MBCC sponsor activation on Sunday - a country club kindly sponsored the event, and tried to show their members a good time by creating a portion of sand for their members to enjoy by putting furniture and a tent up (Day at the Beach). It was about 10% of the total space used for concert viewing, and preference was given to people signing up for their raffle ((note: sponsorship!!)) Now, I get it. People are big on rights in this country. My right this, my right that. It's was our country was founded on. But on a real level, if you don't already realize this, let me be clear:

1. Nothing is for free. People dont just spend 100k to put on events for fun. Only cities do.
2. Cities are broke. Hence cities not doing #1 anymore.
3. If you are not paying for the product, you ARE the product.
4. I would love to leave the concert series completely void of any commercialism. Absolutely. And if there are any big money dudes in the South Bay that can write a check for 100k, I personally promise that not one logo will hit the beach.
5. If nobody ponies up, and everyone wants a great concert series, then businesses must be allowed to find some ad/marketing value in their sponsorship of the event.

Super simple. Super straight forward.

So instead of spending my day enjoying my hundreds of hours of FREE work I did to put these on, I instead at their taking grief from a lady who told me that "I should be ashamed of myself" for allowing this to happen.
Although I felt like responding in a different manner, I sat there and took it, and apologized that she didn't have a better time, which I've learned from my restaurant background (just keep apologizing).  And hence the lesson I keep learning: "No good deed goes unpunished." But really? Shame?

If someone actually reads this that was involved - a challenge: try to actually HELP our city. Do something positive instead of complain. I'm 100% into collaborative efforts, and would love sponsors, and volunteer help to make these concerts even more special than they already are.  And if you want to whine, don't email me. Take the other gadflies in our town to dinner, go to Vons and get old people to sign a petition against the concerts, and put another ridiculous non-logical referendum into play. Go Hermosa.


Anonymous said...

Jed,Allen and the Saint Rocke Family, Thank you for all you do in Hermosa Beach!! In my opinion, your establishments and events always show class. Dan, myself and our 2 kids(age 16&10)have always enjoyed your restaurants and concerts. I am proud to say I first met you on the inception of Union Cattle at the City Council Meeting.Shame on complainers,they need to get a life!!
Sandy R.

denduke said...

Allen and the Siant Rocke Family indeed have our gratitude for supporting the HB Sunset Concert Series. The bottom-line issue was with one young employee who asked us to leave a so called "reserved" area of the event. By asking us to move, he violated well established free access protections of the City, County and State. There are no permits issued to reserve any part of the beach in HB. Allen was the Promoter of the event and we had many discussions about this. He agreed this was "the incident" that we resolved. The young man was forgiven and we actually got better seats. GO HERMOSA!