Indio Residents Brace for Coachella Fest
INDIO -The Coachella Music and Arts Festival brings thousands of people to the valley. It may be good for business but some neighbors are saying it's bad for their health.
City officials in Indio have been working with residents who live around the polo grounds trying to mitigate any disturbances from the festival, but neighbors say it's not enough.
For fans it's a music party. For the city its a money maker. But for Roy Salazar, Coachella Fest is a nuisance.
Salazar is 100 years old and lives just steps from the polo grounds. His son Dave comes to town every year just for the festival.
"People have a right to enjoy themselves. I have a right to enjoy myself and right now I am not enjoying myself. I want to be in Colorado. I want to be home. My wife is recovering from cancer and here I am," Dave Salazar said.
But Salazar isn't here to party, he says he has to come to town to protect his dad.
"My father is 100 years old, he's not going any place. I can't expect the city to stand here and put a policeman in his front yard or spend the night here," Salazar said.
Salazar says once the festival starts he won't even be able to walk down the street outside his own home without a wristband. City officials say the wristbands are actually a good thing, keeping everyone without one off of Avenue 50 and out of residents backyards.
"We felt the only way to manage it is by identifying [residents] because the law enforcement staff and security staff that are going back and forth need to have some sort of identification that they do belong there," Indio Police Department Spokesman Ben Guitron said.
But Coachella Fest and Stagecoach are huge revenue generators for the city.
"In this economic time when the city is strapped for dollars it gives us an opportunity to market our city, market our polo grounds that are out there the Empire and the Eldorado. To bring people into the city to let them know we have more to offer besides the concerts themselves. It brings us the notoriety of being the place where both the Stagecoach and Coachella Music Festivals are held," Indio Mayor Glenn Miller said.
To the city, a few weeks of traffic and noise are small prices to pay for millions of dollars in revenue. But after years of dealing with the crowds, cars and noise, the Salazars say they've had enough.
If you have any questions or concerns please call the Concert Hotline at (760) 541-7800 and someone from the city of Indio will help you out. You can also email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.