CHICAGO (CelebrityAccess) Jam Productions is planning to move its “Mamby on the Beach” music festival to the Montrose area of Lake Michigan near Chicago – and the situation is causing a stir that is centered around two little birds.
A pair of piping plovers, which is on the endangered species list and one of only 70 pairs nationwide, has decided to make Montrose its nesting area and has already laid eggs. To have the local newspapers tell it, the birds, named Monty and Rose, are causing headaches for the festival promoter, and that’s not all.
“In recent weeks, Mamby has created waves between fans eager to dig their toes back into the sand, a promoter with millions of dollars on the line, neighbors who don’t want ‘Ravinia South’ and ornithologists tracking the mating habits of two baseball-sized birds,” the Chicago Tribune reported.
That was followed be even more news:
“Monty was spotted performing his courtship dance again, and by Wednesday a new egg was announced,” the Tribune later reported. “By Thursday, his partner, Rose, had laid a second egg and a third was spotted Saturday.”
The NIMBYS already dislike festivals in the Montrose area and opposed a visit by Mumford & Sons in 2015. This time around, Jam’s Jerry Mickelson and the main community group opposing the Mamby festival have fired letters back and forth.
As for Monty and Rose, they have chosen an area high up that ornithologists hope will protect the new clutch from floods and the summer crowds on the beach. The first clutch was removed from the beach last week ahead of a storm and were cared for by the Lincoln Park Zoo, according to the paper.
Meanwhile, Chicago Sun-Times columnist Neil Steinberg talked to Mickelson who said he has talked to concerned environmentalists.
“We want to make sure the birds are safe,” Mickelson said. “I went into the den of the lion, trying to resolve their issues. … Most of them weren’t even relevant. I answered and responded to every one.”
Mickelson, who co-founded Jam with Arny Granat in 1972, did add the following, noting that millions of dollars are at stake:
“The plovers I totally get,” he said. “There is always some butterfly, some worm that is going to go extinct. Where does it stop?”
Meanwhile the Chicago Park District is trying to arbitrate the situation.
“We are currently working with Mamby Festival organizers to bring the concert site inland to a location that is not invasive to the piping plover’s nesting,” it said in a statement. “The District remains committed to managing parkland fairly for all users.”
Community is a very important element of Mamby On The Beach and we are working diligently with the Chicago Park District to properly accommodate Montrose Beach’s newest community members: the Piping Plovers.
— Mamby On The Beach (@Mambybeach) June 24, 2019
This year’s festival, scheduled Aug. 23-24, includes Troye Sivan, Santigold, and Sylvan Esso.