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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Keep All-Ages Shows In Omaha!

Tuesday, April 15th, the all-knowing and all-seeing Omaha City Council will be voting on whether or not minors should be allowed to go to concerts at places like Slowdown and The Waiting Room because they--*gasp!*--serve alcohol.

Of course, this is a problem. Currently, there is supposedly more Council support to ban minors from attending concerts that are at Slowdown/Waiting Room.

(Of course, they're going to turn a blind eye to the Hanna Montana concert that featured thousands of 13-year-old girls who attended the concert while the Qwest Center served beer. Oh, and that Creighton basketball game--I'm pretty sure they let kids in there. What's that? Spamalot? You mean they let kids go to that? They did, didn't they...I think they sold beer and liquor at that joint. You get the point.)

If all-ages shows are banned, we're going to see a lot of bands that Omaha would not normally get (and used to not get) start to avoid the place, because 1% Productions will no longer be able to promise strong crowds for these bands. Not to mention that you're taking away an important opportunity for young people--and, in the end, all people--to be exposed to great art and culture.

Say what you will about the bands they get, what cannot be denied is how much national exposure Omaha has received because of all the incredible shows they get. And to see the City Council in all their arrogance and hypocrisies try to mess it up because they know how better for you and your kids to live your life makes me want to puke. Hopefully it does you, too. Three things you can do to help out (and two of them are incredibly easy):

1. Sign this online petition. Remember, after you enter in your info, you have to go into your e-mail and click on the link that is sent to you for it to be an "official" electronic signature. If you live out of town, just use 68104 for the zip code.

2. E-mail your councilperson (scroll to the bottom of this post to get their contact info). Remind them they are elected to this position to make the city a BETTER place, not make it worse because they're afraid the kid who is old enough to go to war and vote for them might get a rouge beer at a rock concert. Remind Jim Suttle how strongly he believes in the arts. Remind them how much Saddle Creek and 1% Productions has meant to building up the national arts reputation of Omaha--and how important this is to actively courting and recruiting young professionals, so crucial to the long-term growth of Omaha.

3. Go to the Council meeting on Tuesday. What else are you doing on a Tuesday? Be active in your community. The more people that show up for the cause here, the more impact it will have. Democracy in action, people! The meeting is at 2pm--I would imagine to keep down the number of people that show up, but take a late lunch and show them what's up--and the address is:

1819 Farnam St
Suite LC-1
Omaha NE 68183

Let's get at it. At the very least, sign the online petition (it literally takes 30 seconds), and e-mail your councilman. Go to the meeting. Send in the letter you write to the Council to the Omaha World-Herald. Don't let the City Council ruin a great and growing music scene!

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Brav-fucking-o! I swear to each and every one of you Omahans that if you allow the banishment of all ages shows at legitimate local music venues that people like us helped to establish, I will dick kick every one of you. For realsies. Even you, Joe Merchant. I don't even know who you are.
We actually have a decent comprimise for this in Chicago. If a show is going to be all ages, it has a curfew of 10.
Iowa City passed a law that makes all shows with alcohol 19 and older, which I just don't get. "Hey, let's let 19 year olds into bars so that they drink tons of alcohol and the bars will get more money and pay more taxes, but we should definitely keep underage kids away from alcohol at concerts." The hypocisy knows no bounds.
Our cause has been in the Public Pulse a couple times this week, including today....

Hopefully it gets some momentum going
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