Northeast LA Festival cancel notice

Glassell Park -- The Northeast Spring Carnival was supposed to be a fun event to raise money for youth programs at the L.A. Police Museum and LAPD. Instead, it turned out to be a big mess.

City permits were revoked on the same day the carnival was to begin on April 22. Eagle Rock Boulevard near Avenue 31 had been blocked and carnival equipment set up when the event was suddenly called off without explanation. "It's sad to say that our spring carnival has been cancelled," said a posting on the LAPD Northeast Division Facebook page.

What happened?

Councilman Gil Cedillo said that Highland Park’s police museum, which organized the carnival, failed to give residents enough notice about the street closure, which would block access to emergency vehicles. The office said it was unaware of the event since permits indicated that it was taking place in the neighboring council district.

“Councilmember Cedillo believes that the safety and access of residents, visitors, and others are critical in organizing such a large event on a highly-traveled street,” said the council office in a statement.

Carnival Organizer Says Rules Were Followed

But museum executive director Erica Arias refuted claims that it failed to notify residents and follow the city’s procedures.

Arias said LAPD officers from the Northeast Division assisted with outreach, the fire department approved emergency access plans, and road closure signs were posted as scheduled. She said the wrong council office was notified -- but that was an error made by the city's own Bureau of Street Services.

“I have no problems saying if we messed up,” said Arias, whose museum has organized similar carnivals across the city. “But the fact of the matter is that we did not.”

Carnival Plans on Hold

Cedillo has offered to work on a future Northeast Carnival. However, the museum, which lost several thousand dollars because of the cancellation, has no immediate plans to do so.

“We are very disappointed in the outcome of all this,” Arias said. 

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