Open containers permitted for Festival Days dance

During the Philip City Council meeting on Monday, April 6, the audience overflowed the Commissioner's Room of the Haakon County Courthouse.

Many audience members represented the Festival Days Committee of the Philip Chamber of Commerce. Their filing for a special event permit with the city for June 19 through 21 included permission to allow alcoholic beverages on public property during the proposed street dance starring the the Dustin Evans band.

Branden West, coordinator for the Matched Bronc Ride, said that, with 1,500 extra people in town, the chamber would like to keep them in town for the dance. The big name band and a large dance area would be the main draws. The Matched Bronc Ride would be over around 8:30 p.m. and the dance would start at 9:00 p.m.

Glenn Parsons said that all the business owners on Center Ave. were agreeable with the open container request. Many stated that they did not want any fences or barriers put up in front of their businesses, just for the street to be blocked at both ends.

According to Jared Doud, the Festival Days Committee has conditionally arranged for a professional security team, one, "unequivocally recommended by the City of Deadwood, to have nine personnel within the alcohol-permit zone."

Insurance Agent Joe Gittings said that the required liability insurance coverage for the event would consider the chamber and the city as event hosts. Neither would sell nor distribute alcohol. Drinks could only be purchased from inside the two licensed businesses that would be inside the cordoned off area. No alcohol would be allowed to leave the cordoned off area. The insurance policy would have a no-fault claim for up to $1,000 per injured person, then any further claim would have to prove liability on the city or the chamber. This is the same type of policy used during the Philip Centennial.

The city council unanimously approved the first reading of Ordinance #2009-02, which amends Section 4-108 of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Philip. The new ordinance legally permits the city to allow exceptions to the No Open Container Law for special events with prior applications to the city.

The council also unanimously accepted the special event permit made by the Festival Days Committee. The permit includes the parade on Saturday morning and a possible outdoor karaoke on Saturday night. Two extra police officers, rather than just one, will be hired by Police Chief Kit Graham for Festival Days. Mayor John Hart said, "I would rather have too much help than not enough."

In related business, the council approved a special event permit for Relay For Life for June 13. The group would like to cordon off Center Ave. at 7:00 a.m. so vehicles will not be in the way for the setting up of booths, the stage and luminary candles. Though customer parking will not be available directly in front of some businesses, the increased numbers of people near those businesses are anticipated to increase trade during the day.

The city has received notification that Haakon County has made an overpayment of $6,467 to the city. This will be taken out of future tax payments to the city from the county.

Seth Hyberger with the Central South Dakota Enhancement District asked the council to supply a list of goals and objectives for the future use of city land. He said that Philip's downtown is quaint and poignant, but future land needs may extend outside of the town. The CSDED will use the Philip Community Assessment done in 2004 and other sources to plan for single family housing, multi-family apartments and industrial needs for the next 25 years. These broad blueprints will include zoning ordinances.

The city pool has hired its summer lifeguards. Manager Rose Bennett will be overseeing Taylor Holman, Colin Van Lint, Abby Fitzgerald, Molly Coyle, Marissa Mann and Lindsey Mann.

A Mayoral Proclamation will claim May 1, 2009, as "Silver Star Banner Day" to honor the wounded and ill soldiers of the City of Philip and State of South Dakota.

The combined city and school election will be Tuesday, April 14. The polling place, room A-1 of the Philip High School, will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The council will meet in special session at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 21, in the Commissioner's Room to sit as the election canvassing board. The next regular council meeting will be at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, May 4, in the Community Room of the Haakon County Courthouse.