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Sunset Junction Denied Permit; Festival in Jeopardy

Bad Brains live at Sunset Junction, 2010
Bad Brains live at Sunset Junction, 2010
Timothy Norris

Sunset Junction's permit for this weekend's festival has been denied by the Los Angeles Board of Public Works. Kevin Bronson of Buzzbands.la reports that the permit could still be granted later if the non-profit organization comes up with $141,00 worth of owed fees. There seems to be a decent chance, however, that the event will be canceled, although festival negotiations have gone down to the wire before.

Scheduled to take place this weekend in Silver Lake, the Sunset Junction line-up includes Butthole Surfers, Bobby Womack, Hanson, the Melvins and Lil Jon.

The festival has long been a source of controversy, particularly in Silver Lake. Two years ago, I wrote about the tension between festival organizers and residents and business owners, over issues like street access. Many believed that, even then, the event -- which began in 1980 as a community street fair -- had long since outgrown its digs.

The city has also been at odds with the festival, squabbling about fees, with Sunset Junction organizers complaining that they pay much greater municipal costs than venues like the Hollywood Bowl. The city claims that Sunset Junction owes $267,000 in fees dating back to last year, a number that festival organizers are disputing.

Will Sunset Junction go forward as scheduled this year? It remains to be seen, but we will keep you updated.

For pics from last year's fest, see "Sunset Junction 2010: Day One with Ghostland Observatory, Bad Brains and more" and "Sunset Junction 2010: Day Two with Lee "Scratch" Perry, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes and more."


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