Rodeo hits the sound barrier

LOCAL laws officers clutching decibel counters will be on duty to see that visiting cowboys don't kick up too much of a fuss when a rodeo is staged at Rockhampton Heritage Village.

It's not the hollering during the competition that had councillors voicing concerns this week, but the post-rodeo party.

The Central Rodeo Cowboys Association will stage its grand finals in the village's arena on November 4, 5 and 6 and asked the council for permission to partyon afterwards until midnight on Friday and 2am on Sunday.

The normal Heritage Village curfew is 10pm.

Torn between wanting to encourage greater use of the Heritage Village and protecting the peace of nearby residents, councillors settled on a compromise of midnight as a cut-off for entertainment and a 1pm deadline for clearing the site.

Cr Cherie Rutherford said it was worth a try, but councillors had to be aware of the possible disruption to people living nearby in the network of streets off Boundary Rd.

Cr Bill Ludwig said the council had to be seen to be doing its duty and suggested posting local laws staff around the perimeter of the site to measure the level of noise being generated.

Cr Rutherford said she was still concerned because "it's not the level of noise but the constant beat," that causes most disruption.

The association plans to run the rodeo until 10.30pm on Friday the 4th and Saturday the 5th and asked if it could provide entertainment in the form of a live band or DJ.

Association president Darryl Baulch said yesterday he was disappointed by the councillors' decision.

"I was advised by a sound engineer that if we angled the speakers towards the industrial area there would be no impact on the residential area," he said.

"This will be our major event of the year and we need to make money to continue. The longer we are allowed to run, the more money we will make.

"The rodeo will finish at about 10pm and that gives us just two hours to meet and talk and enjoy some entertainment."

He said the Heritage Village had never staged a rodeo before and he hoped the people of Rockhampton would get behind it.

Entry is just $10 for adults, $5 for pensioners and high school students with free entry for primary school pupils.

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