With most of the necessary event permits in order, Napa Valley Expo officials said Tuesday the fairgrounds is about ready to host the five-day BottleRock music festival that kicks off on May 8.
The BottleRock setup will start as soon as Wednesday when some storage units are scheduled to arrive, with the erection of performance stages to occur in coming days.
Expo CEO Joe Anderson said things are moving right along, though he is still waiting for the state fire marshal to give the event a final stamp of approval and waiting for liquor liability insurance.
“Earlier on we were having some coordination issues,” Anderson said of BottleRock. “It’s the first time they’ve done this. It’s learning the idiosyncrasies of our facility versus doing Outside Lands in San Francisco.”
“Because it’s the first time out, the fire department, police department, CalFire, everybody is taking extra due diligence to make sure everything is covered, everything we can possibly think of,” Anderson said.
“It’s like having a baby. You can plan it all you want, but it’s going to happen how it’s going to happen.”
Last week, the state fire marshal visited the Expo to review maps and plans for the event. A dozen or so items on the plan needed tweaking, Anderson said. The fire marshal will be out again Wednesday and could possibly sign off on the festival that is two weeks away.
“We’re hoping that tomorrow when we meet with the fire marshal, we’ll be able to move forward with a final stamp on the maps,” Anderson said.
Anderson said he had received verification of general liability insurance from BottleRock and it exceeded the Expo’s requirement of $5 million.
“They’ve given us an $11 million general liability policy,” Anderson said, adding that BottleRock will also provide insurance for all the sub contractors it hires.
The event still needs to secure a $5 million liquor liability policy, Anderson said. BottleRock will operate under one alcohol license from the Alcoholic Beverage Control, so all sales will shut down at 9 p.m., an hour before the outdoor concerts and indoor festivities end each night. Originally, BottleRock had requested to keep indoor events going until 1 a.m.
“It will make it easier to do the security sweep and for (police) to get everyone out of here at the end of the night,” Anderson said.
The Expo stands to make at least $115,000 from the festival, plus up to $4,000 each day BottleRock is on the property prior to May 6. Additionally, the Expo will receive a 15 percent cut of all alcohol sales, $120 per keg, and reimbursement for staff and security time.
Anderson said the $115,000 will be paid before the event and BottleRock has 30 days after the festival to pay the remaining bills.
Anderson said there will be a time for an event debrief at the Expo and also one for authorities following BottleRock. The idea was suggested by a neighbor during a recent public meeting.
“When and if that time comes that we do a second event, they’re going to have learned from this first event process, what went well, what didn’t, what are the things we didn’t think about,” Anderson said. “I think between all the different heads put together in this, that we’ve actually thought of everything. I think the only thing that really fell through was motorcycle parking.”
At the city-hosted public meeting last week, a BottleRock pass holder asked about motorcycle parking near the Expo. Anderson said he believes organizers are working to provide this, in addition to bicycle parking.