With 5,000 people having attended WiIL Rock Fest people behaved themselves inside the park pretty well, but some neighbors complained about the noise and cursing, said Caledonia Police chief Toby Schey.

Police arrested two people during the 12-hour music festival that was held Saturday at Caledonia-Mount Pleasant Memorial Park, but they received about 20 complaints about the noise and vulgar language that could be heard miles away over the speakers.

Rock Fest featured 40 bands on four stages.

“It went as well as could be expected,” Schey said. “There were a couple of arrests, a disorderly conduct ticket and a possession of a marijuana charge. But that’s about all that happened inside the park. Outside the park there were traffic concerns and complaints with noise and amplified language — cursing that could be heard outside the park through the speakers.”

Ray Stibeck, owner of Route 20 Outhouse, organized the one-day concert event with 95 WIIL ROCK, a radio station based in Pleasant Prairie. The second of three music festivals to be held at the Caledonia-Mount Pleasant Memorial Park, Stibeck also put on the Kraut Music Festival in June and they plan to have another one-day music festival October 3, which will feature Christian rock band Skillet.

Several residents living around the park had voiced concerns about the type of music Rock Fest would be featuring and organizers held an informational meeting about it weeks before the event.

Still, Jim Svboda, the superintendent for the joint park, said overall he was happy to have had the crowd they did and operationally things went well for the event. But he understands the concerns neighbors have and said they plan to address the cursing issue through the contracts they have with the bands.

“We want this to be a positive event and we’ll do what it takes to fix this,” Svboda said. “We’ll build a clause into the bands’ contracts that they won’t be able to curse, unless the word is legitimately a lyric in one of their songs. And if they do they’ll be fined or shut down.”

But Svbodoa said that while he received about 20 complaints, he also saw a number of neighbors having parties and outside enjoying the music.

“We don’t want this to be a negative for the village, we want it to work and we want to be able to have these events in the future,” he said. “We just need the opportunity to be able to fix this and we’re hoping that we’ll have the opportunity to fix this.”

Stibek and his company GZK Entertainment have invested over $67,000 free and clear into the joint park.

“I’d hate to see us lose this,” Svboda said. “Oak Creek has already said that they would take it. I think we’re fortunate it have it.”

The Joint Parks Commission is expected to talk about Rock Fest at its meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 27 at Caledonia-Mount Pleasant Park, 9614 Northwestern Ave.
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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.

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