The Put-in-Bay Chamber of Commerce did not dawdle after last year's unofficial Christmas in July festivities on the island got, as they described it, out of hand, including public intoxication, wall-to-wall golf carts, general and wanton debauchery, and "busloads of visitors from Detroit."
"If you didn’t know any better," the Put-in-Bay Gazette mused in the aftermath, "you’d have thought Put-in-Bay was ground zero for the Miss World Fat Booty Twerking Pageant."
This would not happen again in 2019, not under the watch of this formidable defender of family friendly island fun. The word was put out to local businesses to cease any plans for Christmas in July events for this year, op-eds were penned, press releases were sent in a preemptory flurry to ward off the Naturday hopes and Jaeger dreams of the awaiting hordes. A Safe Island Task Force, no doubt outfitted with the finest walkie talkies available on the market, was formed and staffed.
And it seems to have worked.
The Chamber issued a press release early this week touting what amounted to a quaint, boring, regular weekend on the islands, which is also what WKYC's intrepid new reporter Mike Polk found when he visited.
"This is not as chaotic as advertised," Polk admitted between licks of an ice cream cone.
From the Chamber's message:
This year, the historically busy weekend went off without a hitch due to extensive planning and preparations by the SITF and Chamber of Commerce, which focused on travel logistics and planning, law enforcement and traffic processes, and communication with visitors, business owners and residents. These initiatives, put in place this summer to ensure everyone has an enjoyable time on the island, have already started to make an impact on island safety.The same protocols will be enforced when Kid Rock visits Put-in-Bay for a concert later this year, an easier task, we'd assume, with the five or six people who will show up for a concert by Kid Rock.
This past weekend saw new traffic flow plans put into place by Put-in-Bay Police to guide drivers to less pedestrian-heavy areas around downtown and communicate island traffic laws to keep everyone safe while enjoying their time on the island. These regulations apply to traditional motor vehicle drivers and golf cart drivers, which is the most popular method of transportation on the island, and will be used during busy weekends throughout the remainder of the year.
Law enforcement presence increased on the island to ensure everyone had a safe experience during their visit. Special duty officers were present across the island directing traffic and providing a visible safety presence for island visitors, similar to a community festival. The Put-in-Bay Police successfully enforced open container, DUI and other public safety violations governed by local and state laws.
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