LOUISVILLE – As all of you know, Fringe Elements has been dealing with zoning issues for the last six months. We have done everything that we are legally required to do to follow the process of having the zoning changed. We had the buy-in of the owner, and perhaps naively believed that by following the letter of the law and doing all that we were asked to do, we would be granted the change.
Then, on September 24, we held our open meeting regarding the zoning change, and developed a clear understanding of both mob mentality and how unreasonably unwelcome we were. We were called sinners, and the facts we put forth were dismissed as clear lies.
Since that time, Jim King, Representative of District 10 and the President of the Metro Council, has sent out a letter to all of his constituency specifically about Fringe Elements, assuring them that the “unfortunate situation” would be coming to an “acceptable close.”
We had a visit from a representative of Metro Alcoholic Beverage Control on Friday, October 18. He looked around the building, was given access to every room, every closet, every refrigerator, even invited to open desk drawers. His report to his supervisor, which was given in our presence, was that there was nothing going on that was illegal or inappropriate in our handling of BYOB alcohol.
On Thursday, October 24, he called to let us know that if we did not stop allowing alcohol immediately, the Board of Directors could be brought up on bootlegging charges. We agreed to suspend the acceptance of alcohol in the building.
What has become unfortunately clear to us is that the 2221 Buechel Avenue address is not a viable location for us. We plan to vacate the building within the next few weeks.
We want to make it clear that we have done nothing illegal or inappropriate in our pursuit of a zoning change. The same, unfortunately, cannot be said of members of the Metro Council and other officers of the city, who have, indeed, knowingly disseminated inaccurate and misleading information as well as using their influence in an unfortunately successful attempt to demonize Fringe Elements and our community-building goals.
However, what was won was a skirmish, not the war.
Fringe Elements will continue, and we will be moving to a new building upon vacating the current premises. We will not allow small-minded and underhanded individuals to overcome us as a community, and as a community center. We are not disbanding, we are simply moving to a location with appropriate zoning, so we can concentrate on working with the community to bring events to reality.
Our plans remain the same through November 5 at our present location. Beyond that, we will keep you abreast of what our schedule is, and where those events will take place. We intend to have limited events after November 5 until mid-January, 2014. We do already have some plans for parties and gatherings sponsored by members of our community in December, and we anticipate that those will continue.
During the next few weeks, we will be updating our website, planning out our future events, moving equipment and setting up a new space, and we want, and need, your help with that. We’ll be announcing more details as we have them available, but we’re going to be reaching out to you to help us make this happen.
We have three parties already on our schedule, and we’ll continue with those.
Please join us on Friday, November 1 after the Louisville Munch, for our All Saints (and Sinners) Celebration, beginning at 9pm. We still have our fabulous decorations up, and we’ll be celebrating the saints and sinners among us, and among others as well.
On November 2, come join us for one last blowout in the Buechel Avenue space, which we are christening our Hit and Run party. Master Kristina of Lexington is going to be presenting for us, and it’s sure to be a night to remember. Come out and have some fun, let’s blow this Popsicle stand in style.
Please remember that due to the danger of the bootlegging proclivities of the Board of Directors, no alcohol is allowed at either party, but that does mean we’re open to 18+ for both nights. In honor of the occasion, both parties are $15, or you can pay $25 on Friday night and attend both Friday and Saturday.
On November 16, our friends at The Warehouse have opened their doors to us again for our Bizarre Bazaar, where we will gather vendors and maybe even a class or two. We’re still putting the finishing touches on that, so more information will be available soon, but keep that date clear.
The Board of Directors, Fringe Elements, Inc.