CARVER (WBSM) — The Carver Select Board voted this morning to amend the alcohol and common victualler licenses for the remainder of the King Richard’s Faire 2023 season following complaints about traffic and overselling of tickets.

The emergency meeting was called for earlier this week.

“This was related to traffic blocking up Route 58, the main thoroughfare in town, causing a public safety concern in any type of emergency situation,” Town Administrator Robert Fennessy told WBSM.

During the two-hour hearing, the select board heard from Carver Police Chief Marc Duphily and King Richard’s Faire ownership before voting for additional conditions to the Faire’s licenses.

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A copy of the order was provided to WBSM, with nine conditions that must be followed to avoid suspension or revocation of the Faire’s licenses that allow them to sell food and alcoholic beverages.

Read the Complete Order on King Richard's Faire

The new conditions take effect immediately, which means they’ll need to be implemented this weekend.

The Faire will have to comply with a Temporary Traffic Control Plan that was put together last year, and that plan must be followed every day the Faire is open, regardless of the weather, unless otherwise directed by the police chief.

There will be an additional requirement of two approved off-site satellite parking areas that must be open at all times, regardless of weather.

The Faire must also provide shuttle buses to bring patrons back and forth from the satellite lots to the fairgrounds, and must hire school bus drivers to drive those shuttle buses.

The Faire utilized a similar plan for the 2022 season, with a satellite lot at nearby Edaville and shuttle buses bringing patrons from one location to the other. It is unknown why the Faire did not use that same plan for the 2023 season.

Perhaps most importantly of the new conditions, the Faire “will only sell those number of tickets that can reasonably ensure adequate parking of vehicles in the Faire’s lots and authorized satellite lots,” the order states.

This comes after numerous complaints have been made about “overselling,” that patrons who purchased tickets online for a specific date, as now required for online ticket sales, would arrive to find that there was no parking for them in the Faire’s lot, and that they were essentially turned away because there was nowhere else they could legally park in order to attend the Faire.

Some would run the risk of being towed by parking on Route 58 or nearby side streets, but the new conditions state that vehicles will not be permitted on any streets in the Town of Carver and patrons will not be allowed to walk to the Faire from remote parking areas. Not only are the vehicles parked on these roads considered a safety hazard in an emergency situation, but having people walking down these roads is also considered a safety risk.

The Faire must have two additional police detail officers on duty for each day of the Faire, regardless of weather. The police chief may also require additional officers be added based on operating conditions of any given day. The Faire will reimburse the town for all detail officers provided.

Similarly, the fire chief and EMS chief have the sole discretion to implement additional personnel from those departments based on operating conditions, and again, the Faire is responsible for all additional costs of added personnel and equipment.

The police chief may also, in consultation with the town administrator, order additional safety measures if necessary, and any such measures will be incorporated into those licenses.

The police chief, again in consultation with the town administrator, may also suspend or revoke either or both of those licenses for the following day of operations if the Faire does not comply with these or any prior conditions, or if there is anything else that comes up that poses an immediate threat to public safety.

“In the event of summary suspension or revocation, the Board will endeavor to convene an emergency meeting to review the decision prior to the next weekend provided that the Faire's request is received by the close of business on the following Tuesday,” the order concludes.

Following the meeting, King Richard’s Faire issued this statement to WBSM:

“This morning, the Town of Carver called a special meeting of its Select Board to discuss traffic and parking challenges at King Richard’s Faire. We are pleased to report that the board and King Richard’s Faire ownership spent two hours in productive discussions exploring all sides of the issue, presenting facts, and brainstorming possible solutions.

We also reviewed the positive impact the Faire has had on the Town of Carver and surrounding areas and appreciate the supportive testimonies offered by Carver residents. The meeting was amicable and productive and will bring positive change for all involved to ensure the public safety of Carver's residents, Faire guests, and our employees. We are confident that the addition of auxiliary parking lots and shuttle buses, as well as refining our online dated ticketing system will help mitigate the parking and traffic concerns.

To assist in this process, we want to take the opportunity to encourage all Faire guests to buy tickets in advance on our website. We would like to remind Faire-goers to park in designated lots ONLY: there is absolutely NO parking along Rt. 58 and adjacent residential streets.

Once you enter our enchanted realm, we hope you experience a world filled with magic and merriment. We look forward to welcoming all our guests to our 42nd season of King Richard’s Faire.

— King Richard's Faire Management”

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