Add the mushroom drop to the list of impressive events that attract people to Kennett Square. Like the Mushroom Festival and Brewfest, it will draw thousands of people to a town of 5,000 people thatís just one square mile.
News of the new event made national headlines, and was even picked up by Good Morning America, which did a short segment on it. There are reports that some Philly TV stations will cover the event on New Yearís Eve.
Organizers managed to pull this event off in very short notice. Borough council approved the application about two months ago.
But in their haste, council didnít consider the ramifications of the event. And they surely didnít expect the kind of exposure it got when the media got a hold of it. So now, council is left scrambling to do damage control in the event large groups of people converge on Kennett Square on New Yearís Eve.
We expect there will be a lot of people attending the event. Who doesnít enjoy a live band, great food and revelry to close out the year? This means there will be throngs of people gathering in a small area near State and Union streets. It could lead to pushing and shoving, and perhaps tempers could flare.
With this in mind, police are dispatching eight officers to cover the event Ė about four times as many as they would typically employ. The public works department will also be put into service on a night they normally would be celebrating with their families.
Matt Fetick, mayor of Kennett Square, said the boroughís open container law would be enforced at the event. Anyone drinking on the boroughís streets faces the possibility of being cited. It may be a hollow threat, because we fully expect to see adults making merry on the eve of a New Year. Itís the one time of year people who normally donít drink imbibe. To even consider there will be no one drinking at the event is foolish.
So what do police do? Should they order paddy wagons? Or should they look the other way when they see people drinking at the event?
Itís clear this wasnít thought through properly. Regardless, the event is a huge win for Kennett Square, which has become a destination spot for many, It is expected that the mushroom drop will now be an annual event, and perhaps borough officials can fine tune it next year after learning what went right and what went wrong this year.
We laud everyone who had anything to do with launching this event, from Kathi Lafferty, to Bobís Crane service, to ToJo Mushroom Co., who financed the $6,000 stainless steel mushroom. Put this event on the list of ďmust do.Ē
And we laud borough council, because they had the foresight to know this would be yet another event to attract people to town.
Weíre looking forward to seeing that mushroom drop from 100 feet in the air, welcoming in the new year.