The second day of the Riverhead Medieval Festival was abruptly canceled Sunday over town permit issues after 1,400 people at attended the event’s first day.
Organizers had failed to secure a permit for the two-day festival. “It was a misunderstanding between me and the people running the Dorothy P. Flint 4-H Campground,” said Bob Fox, president of Medieval Scenarios and Recreations, the nonprofit re-enactment group that organized the event. “I had assumed that they had done the paperwork and they had assumed that I had done it.”
The family-friendly festival, which featured a Medieval fashion show, full body armor simulated medieval combat with sword and shield, archery demos, handmade armory booth and jousting exercises, caused traffic backups on Sound Avenue on Saturday, attracting the attention of local authorities.
“The police showed up asking for the permits; we didn’t have them,” Fox said. “Then the fire marshal got involved. One of the things we were supposed to have was an ambulance on the ground, which we didn’t know about.”
Representatives from the Town of Riverhead said the festival violated a section of the town code regarding permits for special events.
“The fire marshal went out, inspected it, issued them a ticket [Saturday afternoon] and left them to their own devices,” Town Supervisor Sean Walter said.
Representatives from the Dorothy P. Flint 4-H Campground didn’t returns calls seeking comment Monday.
As far as future installments of the festival goes, Fox is trying to work things out.
“We are going to settle up with the Town of Riverhead and see what the present situation is,” says Fox. “We are sort of up in the air all around.”