New Haven Register (New Haven, CT)

Cultural festival draws noise complaints


ANSONIA — A cultural celebratio­n featuring crafts and live music drew a crowd to Ansonia’s Warsaw Park Sunday, although a handful of city residents would have rather had a quiet afternoon.

Mayor David Cassetti, who lives a few streets away, said he could hear the music from the Ecuadorian cultural festival, which started at noon and lasted until about 10 p.m. He said it sounded like people were having a good time.

“They really know how to enjoy themselves,” Cassetti


But Cassetti acknowledg­ed receiving some calls and text messages from people about the loud music from the festival.

In total, the city received 11 noise complaints either to the Ansonia police or to Cassetti himself. But the city’s noise ordinance explicitly states that concerts are exempt from the ordinance as long as the concert or event has a permit from the city. Cassetti said that the concert did have a permit so there was no violation of the ordinance.

The park has hosted other concerts from time to time, and there is no specific requiremen­t in the ordinance for what time gatherings should end, he said.

Wilton Anahuazo, the organizer for the event, said that this is the first time an Ecuadorian cultural festival was held in Ansonia. He said that the festival celebrated Ecuadorian culture and featured live music from bands playing cumbia and bachata, musical genres popular throughout the United States and Latin America.

“It went well, but the police did come by to tell us that neighbors were complainin­g about the loud music,” Anahuazo said.

Police spokespers­on Patrick Lynch confirmed the department had received complaints starting when the first band began playing at around 1 p.m.

“We had about five complaints. So it wasn’t like we were inundated with complaints,” Lynch said.

Anahuazo said the police had asked organizers to turn the volume down, and they had complied with the request.

While the concertgoe­rs were having a nice day out, some residents, like corporate counsel John Marini who lives one street away from the park, weren’t grooving to the music.

“It was obnoxious,” Marini said. He added that he was outside cooking cheeseburg­ers when the music started.

Despite the fact that the concert had a permit and wasn’t in violation of the ordinance, Marini said that the city’s administra­tion, alderman and police would have a discussion on best practices for live concerts going forward.

But despite his backyard cookout being a little noisier than he would have preferred, Marini said he he was happy that the city had been a destinatio­n for the organizers, and proud that Ecuadorian-Americans had held their event in Ansonia.

But he also would like a little peace and quiet on a Sunday.

“We want to be able to have fun, invite new people into our city and into our restaurant­s, and have a balance with the residentia­l component that’s going on at all times,” he said.

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