Weed's 4&20 Blackbird Festival planned for Aug. 4 and 5

Skye Kinkade
Greg Shivy and Sylvia Massy-Shivy of Radiostar Studios explain to Weed City council members Bob Hall, Ken Palfini, Chuck Sutton and Mayor Dave Pearce their plans for the second annual 4&20 Blackbird Festival, planned for Aug. 4 and 5 in downtown Weed.

The second annual 4&20 Blackbird Festival is planned to last two days and attract  more than double the amount of people, and Weed City Councilors heard how plans to organize the event are proceeding during their meeting yesterday, May 10.

Sylvia Massy-Shivy and Greg Shivy, owners of Radiostar Studio, said the event has been scheduled for Aug. 4 and 5. Though nothing has been confirmed as far as street closures go, the Shivys will come back next month to ask for formal approval to close the streets from Friday, Aug. 3 for set up through Monday, Aug. 6, at noon.

They’ll also ask council to consider extending the noise ordinance until midnight both nights and will ask for permission to use city parking lots and other locations for vendor areas and music venues. Drinking areas, crowd control, security, and other logistical issues will also be discussed at the June 14 meeting, though police chief Martin Nicholas said last year’s event caused almost no problems.

Massy-Shivy said last year’s event turned out to be the fourth largest one-day festival in all of California, and 2,500 to 3,000 people showed up.

“We’re excited to grow this festival, and we have a five-year plan,” Shivy-Massy told councilors Ken Palfini, Chuck Sutton, Bob Hall and Mayor Dave Pearce. (Councilor Jerry Broomfield was absent due to illness.) “We’re planning on 5,000 people attending each day for this year’s event... we want to plan everything very carefully, and make this a festival that will put Weed on the map.”

Massy-Shivy said Radiostar is working with the Chamber of Commerce, and will be donating 10 percent of the event’s profit back to the Chamber for a project of their choice. Last year’s proceeds went to purchase a street clock, which was installed in December in front of the Radiostar building on Main Street.

The Rollin’ Weed car show will be taking place at the same time as the 4&20 Festival, which will make the total event more attractive to a greater variety of people, Shivy-Massy said.

“The motels and RV parks will do well, and there will be overflows,” she predicted.

To accommodate the influx of visitors, Massy-Shivy said she’s been working to find an area that could be used for camping purposes. Initially, the city’s Botanical Gardens in South Weed was discussed as the perfect location. A camping fee of $35 could be charged, resulting in an estimated $10,000 in TOT proceeds for the city, Massy-Shivy estimated. However, plans to use the Botanical Gardens for that purpose have fallen through, though the Shivys are still searching for an appropriate place for camping to occur.

City administrator Ron Stock suggested the Shivys approach the Botanical Gardens’ entire board with the idea. Using other city-owned acreage near the Gardens was also discussed.