After the City of Trees music festival ended Saturday night, hundreds of people were stuck in their cars for hours waiting to leave Gibson Ranch County Park in Elverta.
Now event organizers are apologizing, admitting things did not go according to plan.
“Totally our fault, we did not think it through,” said Former congressman Doug Ose, who is CEO of GRP 2011 LLC., the management company that runs Gibson Ranch.
Ose told FOX40 arrangements were made to have an area where people could be dropped off by drivers for ride share apps Uber and Lyft at the beginning of the concert, but no area was designated after it ended.
“When the event was over, those people are now pedestrians … And where they went Saturday was down the main road in one of the lanes of traffic that we counted on for outbound,” Ose told FOX40.
“Getting out of there was a nightmare, it seemed like they were all just bottlenecking towards the exit,” said Darsi Goto, who went to City of Trees Saturday.
Ose said the last major concert at Gibson Ranch was Country in the Park back in 2012, before Uber and Lyft were widely used.
But now with the Aftershock Festival coming in October, Ose said his team will be ready to handle the crowds.
“We have to create a dedicated pathway for pedestrians, and it has to be lighted,” Ose said.
He believes that will keep people off the road, and allow traffic to flow.
Hundreds who attended Saturday also complained getting water was an issue.
“The water line was really long, it wrapped along almost the entire field,” Alena Brahce, who went to City of Trees Saturday, told FOX40.
Radio 94.7 put on the festival. It released a statement about the water situation:
“RADIO 94.7 wishes to thank everyone who attended CITY OF TREES. There were some incredibly cool moments on stage Saturday night (8/15/15) and we’re happy you were part of this first time event. Your support ensures more CITY OF TREES to come!
We’ve received a lot of overwhelmingly positive feedback about the event. We’ve also received feedback about things we will improve in the future, like the traffic flow after the show. That was frustrating and we apologize. One-way in and one-way out creates a painfully long wait.
Gibson Ranch is a great setting for CITY OF TREES and other concert events. We take full responsibility for making the final part of future CITY OF TREES experiences better.
In social media it was alleged that CITY OF TREES “ran out of water” which was then picked up and reported as fact by some in the local news media. This is false. The tank at the free water station required only one refilling. During that time event staff distributed unopened water bottles to all who were in line. Free water was also available at water fountains throughout the venue and at the first aid station for anyone who asked for it.
RADIO 94.7 prides itself as a station that encourages listeners to commit Random Acts of Kindness. Long lines are not kind. Lines out of the park, lines to buy food and lines to refill water bottles take away from the concert experience. They will be addressed and solved before our next event.
As you know, we welcome feedback! It’s a big part of what has made RADIO 94.7 different and better. Please keep it coming.
THANKS again for attending! THANK YOU to all of the artists who performed, all of the vendors, partners and sponsors, to all of the staff, security personnel, medical staff and EMTs, security, law enforcement and to the production staff for making CITY OF TREES a great concert event!”