Wow! It was a beautiful day here in Keene, perfect for the Free Keene Fest held this afternoon on Railroad Square. With at least 300 people stopping by to purchase or sell items, pass out informational fliers or collect money/clothing for charities, it was a fun time for all. The Federal Crime, a rock band, played for half of the festival and then some local gentlemen took over the music aspect playing the banjo!
I was thoroughly impressed with several things today, one being the amount of Keene folk that walked through, enjoying the music and purchasing items. People were super friendly and supportive of this agorist festival, and many took fliers and pamphlets of liberty-oriented subjects with them upon departure. There were, of course, many freedom-loving people from all over the state (Grafton, Manchester, Peterborough, Hancock, etc) that enjoyed the day as well!
It was nice to see the variety of items the vendors had, as well as the style in which they set up their tables. Ice cream, muffins, jam, jewelery, massages, framed photos, liberty flair, books and bumper stickers, and even massages were sold, as were a wide variety of attire. There was even a table for black jack! Information regarding Monadnock liberty families, ‘Don’t take the plea deal’ (fija), copblock.org, and Fr33 Aid was on display for all. There were tents, canopies, colorful table cloths, and unique signs to make the festival stand out just off of Main Street.
I was tickled pink to observe the wonderful, calm demeanor of the few police officers that drove or walked by, even though there were MANY blatant open containers. They didn’t say a word about the alcohol, just smiled, made small talk with some festival attendees, and went on their merry way. YAY! I firmly feel that is how it should be all the time! No one was endangering anyone or anything, and so they ignored the open containers. It’s about time! I just hope that friendly attitude of the Keene PD will continue on.
This permit-free, drama-free festival was sensational, and I hope to see many more outstanding festivals in the future! I would also like to thank everyone who participated today; it wouldn’t have been anything noteworthy without them!
Filed under: Announcement, Civil Disobedience, Economic Freedom, Freedom Fest
It’s that time again…Free Keene Fest will be held Sunday, May 8, from 12-4pm on Railroad Square. The rock band, Federal Crime, will be playing live during the festival. If they sound familiar to you, it’s probably because they have played at other Free Keene Fests and even played behind the E.F. Lane Hotel during the Music Festival last fall!
There will be lots of unique things to do, see, and buy. A few will even be handing out informational material on various liberty-oriented topics! Poker and other games will be set up, and food/ beverages will be for sale. Looking for some pro-liberty apparel to sport? Come on down! There will be a couple of vendors, including one of my favorite local artists, Dave Dixon, selling his famous t-shirts and sweatshirts. Did I mention there will be a clothing drop-off if you are looking to give to the community? Clothing will be collected at the Fr33 Aid booth to be donated to a local charity and anyone in need.
Free Keene Fest has been a fun time for many for almost five years, being held biannually. Many people come from afar to hang out with other liberty-minded individuals. There are no permits or vendor’s fees paid to the city of Keene for this festival of freedom. However, responsibility for your property/trash/etc is expected!
I sincerely hope to see this Spring’s Free Keene Festival a smashing success!
Filed under: Announcement, Freedom Fest, Outreach, Update
The Spring 2010 Free Keene Fest has been postponed due to weather. It will now be held on Sunday, April 25 from 11:00a until 4:00p.
The FKF will happen on April 25 rain or shine! (so I hope it shines)
I’m very sorry for this inconvenience. I hope I’ll still see you there on Sunday, April 25!
Filed under: Announcement, Freedom Fest, Outreach, Personal Freedom
Do you ever feel like the government takes too much of your time and money, and takes the enjoyment out of your life?
The Free Keene Fest is a public outreach festival held each Spring and Fall with the purpose of having fun while introducing people to the ideas of liberty. Join us for live music and food while also learning about many different avenues to achieve more liberty in our lifetimes.
The event will include exhibitors such as:
- Liberty Scholarship Fund
- Fully Informed Jury Association
- NH Free Press
- Free Keene Press
- Students for a Sensible Drug Policy
- Anarchy In Your Head
- Alliance of the Libertarian Left
- Free Minds TV
- FreeKeene.com’s Bloggers
- Free Talk Live
- Robin Hood of Keene
- There will also be a gambling table, food vendors, and balloon animals
The following bands will be performing live:
- Josh Noone and the Federal Crime
- Rumors of War
- Jared Dubravsky (from The Colonials)
- A Minor Revolution
The Free Keene Fest is Sunday, October 18 from 11:00a until 3:00p at Railroad Square (82 Main Street) in Keene, and will be followed by a picnic in Robin Hood park until dark.
The event is free and a lot of fun. I hope to see you there!
Filed under: Audio, Free Minds TV, Freedom Fest, Personal Freedom, Police, Update
British grandmother wanted in France for a 20-year-old marijuana conviction she didn’t know about, the nanny state is afraid of pizza cutters, people are up in arms about Arnold Schwarzenegger waving a knife in an online video, taxpayers being forced to build historic sewer museums, Princeton closed because of a squirt gun, more news from the UK nanny state, and FEMA is conducting exercises.
The Spring 2009 Free Keene Fest is coming soon! It will be held Saturday, May 23 - Memorial Day weekend - from Noon until 3:00p at Railroad Square in Keene (82 Main Street), and this year will be followed by a picnic/BBQ in a nearby park. Join us for an afternoon of liberty outreach and live music, and an evening of food and fun.
I realize this is not very much notice, but we wanted to have the festival before it got too hot, yet we wanted to wait until Keene’s trial for “assembly without a permit” was finished. (FYI: In February of this year, Keene cops charged me with “assembly without a permit” for organizing the Fall 2008 Keene Freedom Fest. As I showed up for their trial on May 1, the cop/prosecutor Eli Rivera told me they dropped their charges because the government says you need their permit if you claim exclusive use of Railroad Square but Eli said he could not prove we were using it exclusively. Because we weren’t! So that means that they likely won’t attack us for “assembly without a permit” again, but keep on your toes – they may attack us for other made-up reasons. )
We already have at least one band and a food vendor signed up. Here is a list of organizations that participated in the Fall 2008 festival: Read more
This brief report is to update people on the happenings of the May 1 trials at Keene District Court.
Mike Barskey’s charges for organizing Freedom Fest were dropped prior to the trial. Andrew Carroll was found guilty for possessing marijuana, and will likely turn himself in to the jail on Monday instead of paying any fines. In addition, many activists refused to stand as Judge Burke entered, and it was not even mentioned.
Video will be forthcoming tonight and throughout the weekend.
Other stories on March 3rd were heavily overshadowed by Dave Ridley’s videography arrest. However, the stories of Andrew Carroll and Mike Barskey took another step forward on Tuesday. Both activists pled not guilty to their respective charges, and have trial dates set for May 1, 2009.
Andrew Carroll was arrested for holding marijuana in protest, and Mike Barskey is accused of breaking city ordinances by organizing the Keene Freedom Fest without a license.
Liberty activists called WKBK’s Talkback the past two Saturdays and discussed education, development, the city prosecutor’s aggression against Freedom Fest organizer Mike Barskey, and public areas. Listen as host and city councilor Cynthia actually claims that local laws trump the constitution! Plus, this week’s featured statist caller claims all Free Staters are violent because one of them made a mistake in his past.
The statist also makes an observation that liberty-oriented callers to the show have dropped off, and he’s right. Over the past two weeks, only OTN’s Sam and I have called. The unfortunate fact is, the authoritarians are still the bulk of call load on this show. If you are awake on Saturday mornings, we could really use your help! Please join us in calling the program with a pro-liberty viewpoint. Get details on when and how and discuss with other activists on this Free Keene forum thread.
Mike Barskey, the organizer of Keene’s Spring Freedom Festival, reports that he was recently approached by law enforcement in his hometown of Derry, NH. The officer dropped a piece of paper in his car, saying it “was a “complaint” from Keene PD regarding not having a permit for assembly.” The City of Keene recently dropped charges against FreeKeene’s Toby and Ian for the same offense of “Assembly without a permit.” They are now moving against who they deem to be the actual organizer of this constitutionally protected event.
ACCORDING TO THIS COMPLAINT, Barskey is accused of being in violation with the following Keene Ordinance
ARTICLE XI. OUTDOOR EVENTS*
*Cross references: Environment, ch. 38.
State law references: Open-air meetings, RSA 286:2 et seq.; shows, carnivals, RSA 321-A:1 et seq.
DIVISION 1. GENERALLY
Sec. 46-621. Description.
Outdoor periodic events shall include athletic exhibitions, public dances, circuses, carnivals, live performances, exhibitions, promotional activities and any similar periodic activity open and available to the public which is conducted outdoors. For the purposes of this article, “promotional activities” shall not include promotional sales activities which are held at the normal place of business of the sponsor unless they are activities of a type that involve exhibitions, public dances, circuses, carnivals, live performances and other activities of a similar type which do not relate directly to the sale of the product of the business.
(Code 1970, § 1814.0)
Secs. 46-622–46-640. Reserved.
DIVISION 2. LICENSE
Sec. 46-641. Required.
Any person who wishes to have an outdoor event as described in section 46-621 shall obtain a license from the city clerk.
Sec. 46-642. Fee.
The fee for a license granted under this division shall be as set forth in the schedule of fees in appendix B to this Code for the duration as specified on the license for activities of a commercial nature. However, no fee shall be required for activities conducted by charitable organizations, by governmental agencies, by neighborhood groups, or by religious organizations, unless such activity is generally considered to be a commercial enterprise.
(Code 1970, § 1814.0)
Secs. 46-643–46-670. Reserved.
While deciding whether Mike deserves this harassment or not, I encourage readers of this blog to consider not whether Mike has broken the letter of the rule, but who the rules are meant to serve. While ordinances often have good intentions behind them, only innocent people have been caught up in them this time. Freedom Festival was held on public, taxpayer owned land. Requiring additional work and money to get a license to use the land serves nobody but the City. When the government ceases to serve the people, and only itself, it deserves resistance.
Mike’s appearance date is set for the same day as activist Andrew Carroll’s. Stay on Freekeene.com for updates as that date arrives.