During Memorial Day 2016, Tampa’s Sunset Music Festival was rocked with the unfortunate deaths of 2 attendees of the festival. In what has become a depressingly common practice, the festival’s entire existence was thrown into question as local officials sought to discuss its future in Tampa. This week, The Tampa Sports Authority met to have that discussion and thankfully, the vote was unanimous in favor of retaining Sunset Music Festival.
After vigorous discussion SMF was allowed to continue so long as it implemented best safety practices, but also works towards a substantial set of improvements. Some of these improvements include a larger festival footprint, more water stations, and increased staff such as medical, law enforcement, and ambassadors. Some other proposed improvements included public gate announcements, larger cooling areas, and a larger command center with CCTV systems. Surprisingly, the only voice to speak out against the festival was an anonymous letter from somebody claiming to be a nurse who witnessed numerous overdoses and dehydration cases. In any event, it’s good to see Sunset Music Festival working with the authorities to create a safer festival for all to enjoy during Memorial Day Weekend 2017.