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Post Info TOPIC: Bring Business to NT! Lose $60,025! Any Takers?

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Bring Business to NT! Lose $60,025! Any Takers?

Updated: 01/26/09 08:07 AM

NORTH TONAWANDA Buffalo Stampede owner and concert promoter Vincent Lesh is looking at a bill of $60,000 for a liquor infraction that ended up costing him a $25 fine.

In the wake of last summers concert series in Gateway Park that was raided by police, the city of North Tonawanda is suing Leshs Concerts Plus of Western New York for $30,000 in unpaid fees for renting the park and other expenses, including police patrols. The lawsuit was filed last week.

Concerts Plus staged the popular free concerts on the bank of the Erie Canal. They were halted in the middle of a performance and Leshs liquor licence pulled after a police sting found that concert vendors were selling alcohol to minors.

The company is also being sued by an Ohio band called Dark Star Orchestra for the $30,000 it was to have received for the interrupted Aug. 2 show.

Lesh said he couldnt comment on the lawsuits when contacted Friday at the offices of the Buffalo Stampede minor league basketball team.

After the summer incident, the city questioned the actions of the State Liquor Authority, claiming its actions were too swift and inappropriate, Jeff Mis, the mayors administrative assistant, said Friday.

Leshs liquor license was later reinstated, but it was too late for the concert promoter to recover his losses. When the underage beer sales matter finally went to court, the promoter was fined $25.

Three of the eight concerts had been held before the police investigation prompted the State Liquor Authority to shut the concerts down in the middle of the Dark Star Orchestra show.

After authorities pulled Concert Pluss liquor license, Labatt USA, the concert series main sponsor, announced on Aug. 6 it was canceling its contract with the promoters.

Soon after, Lesh told fans in an open letter on the Internet, It is with great discontent that I am forced to cancel the remaining two shows of the 2008 Gateway Park concert series. Due to the massive financial loss incurred at the Aug. 2 concert, our main sponsor is pulling out of the series, and with no beer permit in hand, we have been left with no other option except cancellation.

The canceled shows included Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers, which was moved to the Town Ballroom in downtown Buffalo; Loverboy; and Rik Emmett of Triumph.

North Tonawanda Mayor Larry Soos said Friday he wants full payment from Leshs company to recover lost income from Gateway Park and other incidentals, which would include police patrols during the concerts.

Meanwhile, Soos is busy trying to drum up performers for this summers concert series, planned for June, July and August.

Time is of the essence, said Mis. These acts have to be booked well in advance of the event and promoters are now leery after what went down last summer.

I find this article
AMAZINGLY IRONIC......I'm sure the way the last promoter was screwed will draw in throngs of new promoters just itching to get their piece of that $60,025 loss to put on a show at Gateway.....I hope they use the armband system to keep all those anxious busnessmen in order as they line up at Mayor Soo's door....

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