Mentiply said the event is most often portrayed in a negative light, but it is good for the community.
”It is promoting the arts and for new bands. You don’t hear about that much.”
She attended a past Springfest at the Naked Turtle in Plattsburgh and didn’t see much illegal activity, she said.
“I really didn’t see any fights or any problems like that,” she said. “Everybody was outside just standing around ... just listening to the music.”
“They were in college, at one point,” Mentiply said of those who express misgivings about the event. “They should really be less strict.”
’MAKE IT LEGAL, SAFE’
Racicot said he is aware of the students’ points of view.
“Obviously, you want to blow off some steam, and they’re more than entitled to that.”
But it needs to be done legally and safely, he said.
“Plattsburgh State and their students have been very good. There are college-related issues, but things are much different than they were in the ‘80s and the early ‘90s,” he said.
“Most of the students are very thoughtful to the community.”
But when it comes to events like Springfest, some “miss that backstory, what it takes to make sure people are safe.
“I can remember several years ago where some Plattsburgh State students were selling bracelets to provide alcohol. That’s not legal.”
A venue that hosts an event like Springfest will make thousands of dollars in a single day, Racicot said.
“We’re talking $30,000 plus. This is not a regular college party.”
And while these large-scale events may bring money to the area, they also come at a cost to the city, Racicot. The Police Department has to beef up patrols, paying officers overtime and incurring other expenses.
“It’s costing the city a whole lot more.”