QUEENSBURY -- The town of Queensbury will file a lawsuit Thursday seeking an injunction to prohibit a heavy metal music festival from being held at West Mountain Ski Center this weekend, even though the venue for the festival appears to have been changed.
“We did receive something in writing from the attorney for (ski center owner Mike) Barbone indicating that the event that had been advertised for this weekend has been canceled,” Cathi Radner, a lawyer for the town, said Wednesday.
“We are still going to go forward and seek an order from the court to make sure that it does not become uncanceled.”
The town is seeking the injunction because West Mountain did not obtain a special-use permit to conduct the festival.
Radner said paperwork for the lawsuit was prepared Wednesday, and will be filed Thursday.
The town will ask the judge to prohibit West Mountain from holding any future music festivals without obtaining a special-use permit.
“It would depend on what the judge is willing to sign, but our hope would be to stay any events without approval,” she said.
Management of the ski center could not be reached Wednesday to confirm the event had been canceled.
But Upstate Metal Mafia, an Albany area concert promoter, posted on its Facebook page Wednesday evening the event, called RedNeck Hellfest III, had been moved to McGinny’s Tavern at 193 Glen St. in Glens Falls.
Barbone, West Mountain’s owner, did not return repeated voicemail messages The Post-Star left Wednesday morning and afternoon seeking comment, and Sue Parker, the marketing director, did not return a voicemail message The Post-Star left Wednesday afternoon.
The festival was slated for Saturday at the ski center, with 10 heavy metal bands playing.
The promoter had advertised the event as offering overnight camping and a tattoo artist fire pit.
On Tuesday, Barbone told The Post-Star the festival would be changed to an indoor event, with no camping.
He said he was willing to sign an agreement, as some town officials had suggested, there would be no camping or outside music.
“I’ll have my mother sign it if they want,” he said.
Radner said Barbone’s lawyer notified the town Wednesday there would “not be a concert at all” this weekend, indoor or outdoor.
Another music festival — The Peoples Fest V, planned for Oct. 11 to 14 — could be held if the Queensbury Planning Board approves a special-use permit.
Barbone submitted an application for the special-use permit earlier this week, and town planning staff were working with him to clarify technical information, Craig Brown, the town’s zoning administrator, said Tuesday.
The Planning Board is scheduled to review the application at its meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Queensbury Center.
Queensbury 2nd Ward Councilman Ron Montesi said Wednesday he read through Barbone’s application at the town Planning Office, and it appears to be complete.
“That’s progress,” he said, referring to the application being submitted.
Queensbury Supervisor Dan Stec said it is “an encouraging piece of news that he has turned in what staff has determined is a complete site plan application.”
Town officials and West Mountain management have been at odds since the ski center held an outdoor music festival in August without seeking a special-use permit.
The music festivals are part of the ski center’s strategy to increase offseason business.
Town officials agreed not to seek an injunction to stop the August festival, after Barbone agreed to apply for a special use permit for future festivals by Aug. 15.
Barbone missed the Aug. 15 deadline, but town officials agreed to hold a spot on Tuesday’s Planning Board agenda to consider the application.