When the Board of Selectmen unanimously voted not to issue permits for a planned event at the Century Sportsman’s Club this weekend, there was obvious disappointment in the audience. About a dozen club members were present, and they expected the third party rental to bolster their treasury, but the event they were hoping for had morphed into something completely different.

The club applied for 2 one-day Beer & Wine licenses on July 19th to cover the event from 1pm-10pm on both days. On the 31st, they further applied for an Outdoor Entertainment license for 1pm-9:30pm on both days. The maximum attendance was listed as 500 people. Representatives from the club even met with the town’s Development Coordination Group (DCG) which was inclined to support what was called the Ashley Sheehan Memorial JamFest.

Members of the Century Sportsman’s Club attend Monday’s Board of Selectmen’s meeting to learn the fate of this weekend’s festival. [Photo by John R. Anderson]

Sheehan was killed in a motor vehicle crash on the Massachusetts Turnpike last fall, and this event was being promoted by her then fiancé Jason J. Moodley and his company 508 Productionz.

Last week and in preparation for Monday’s Board of Selectmen’s meeting, Town Manager Julie Jacobson sought more information. “I wanted to know a little bit more about the event. I wanted to be prepared for the Board of Selectmen.” A quick online search led to the Eventbrite Site for ticket sales, and this is when things got interesting.

The description listed the event from 1pm on Saturday to 1am on Monday; Outdoor Stage 2pm-9:30pm; Indoor EDM Stage 4:30pm-9:30pm; Grow Workshops 2:00pm-4:30pm; and All Access VIP Party 9:30pm-1:30am. This hardly seems like the same event, but it’s in the same place and on the same days.

And then there were the sponsors: 508 Productionz; CBD Greenhouses & CBD Consulting (a collective of medicinal marijuana growers); Humble Family Farms (Dynamics of Cannabis); Worm Town Genetics; and The House of Candy – Reds THC (marijuana infused food products). Over 25 musicians were listed along with more vendors: Holden Trading Company; Hextec Conc.; Methodology Extracts; Lancelot Creations; Something Better Extracts & Apparel; and Boondock Alchemist. There was also some mention of camping, but specifics weren’t given.

Communities throughout the Commonwealth are sailing through unchartered waters when it comes to cannabis events and the recent legalization of recreational marijuana, but that was not the basis for Auburn’s actions. The board simply couldn’t approve permits for one event and have another occur. Concerns were raised about safety, especially if attendees expected a long event and were asked to leave at 10pm. Even with a large group of detail police officers, dealing with a potential of 500 people could be difficult. Select Board Chair Doreen Goodrich told the club members, “I think you’re going to have an angry group of people.”

Goodrich also reminded viewers of Monday’s meeting that the Century Sportsman’s Club is available for events and that it is a good venue based on her personal experience.

508 Productionz posted the following on their Facebook page yesterday: “Due to the Town of Auburn pulling a shady maneuver and pulling permits last second, the show has been moved 10 minutes down the road. Please message ASM Jamfest for updated Venue information. Sorry of the Confusion (Thank You Town of Auburn)

For the record, no permits were ever issued for the ASM Jam Fest, and Monday’s BOS meeting was their first since the DCG meeting to discuss the event. If there was better and earlier planning, things could have gone differently.

Goodrich gave Auburn Mass Daily her assessment, “I feel badly for the members of the Century Sportsman’s Club. It looks like they weren’t given all the information.”

As of 7:30 last night, all the information is the same on the Eventbrite site, and the new event location still has not been announced. One has to wonder how the new permits are going?