Outback Concerts’ Jason Zink had a memorable first experience promoting a Hanson show April 17th in Covington, Ky., finding himself facing a possible $250 fine and 30 days in jail for leading an unauthorized parade downtown.
Zink said Hanson’s "The Walk Tour," which features the band members leading a one-mile walk to raise awareness of the AIDS/HIV epidemic and poverty in South Africa at each tour stop, drew about 100 fans. The event preceded a concert later that night at the Madison Theatre.
"This is the first date I’ve done with them but apparently they do this at every tour stop. They said they’ve never had any sort of an issue with it and never had to get a permit," Zink told Pollstar. "It’s something Hanson does on their own and it’s part of our job to help facilitate things for the artist."
Despite advance promotion about the charity walk, which was to begin at 3 p.m., Zink said Covington city officials still had mixed feelings about it.
"About 2:30 p.m. the chief of police and the city attorney came to the theatre. They said, ‘We’re sorry this is happening [but] some of the council members are upset,’" he explained. "Toward the end of the conversation they did say, ‘We’re not going to stop it but if you do [it] and a citation has to be issued, then you’ll get it.’ We said, ‘OK.’"
The walk went off without a hitch so Zink thought that was the end of it. But officers arrived shortly after the event and told him otherwise.
Covington Police Chief Lee Russo, mentioning safety and traffic concerns, told the Cincinnati Enquirer newspaper that he warned Zink he would be cited if the walk went on without a permit.
"It’s a walk for charity and it was not disruptive in any way so I’m certainly surprised the city was objecting to it," Zink said. "It’s certainly a tough job ensuring the public’s safety but I think there are other ways to handle it."
In the meantime, Zink is scheduled to appear in court May 14th to face the charge.