Thursday, September 18, 2008

Paul and Piper

We received an email today from two old friends
Sculptor Paul VanNess currently in Key West

Hey Everybody,
I just spoke at a city council meeting which was focused on raising the performers and vendors fees from $100 to $250 and removing them from all historic areas in Key West except for residential areas which would be worse than the placing artists in the park in St. Augustine. There was an unbelievable turn out of speakers. Out of the six council members there was only one who believed that the artisis should be removed from Duval Street. The council had met with store owners without artists present to write this legislation. He said we should try going to St. Augustine and do our art because it is not allowed there. I spoke of Bery vs. New York and Savannah, GA artists ( the ACLU stepped in to demand retro active payment of illegal permit fees.) as well as your case in St. Augustine where all artists were awarded retroactive permit fees which amounted to several thousand dollars for many artists. It was televised and many viewed it. These people are completely committed to getting arrested but would rather have the system remain as it currently is. Five of the council members opposed removing artists.

The basis of removing artists was public safety. Many artists and performers stated that there has never been an injury related to the artists ever. No one spoke of any inury as well. It is still on the table currently. Any suggestions for what we should do before the next meeting a month from now? Things are not looking too gloomy just yet.

How is your case on St. George street coming along? By the way the turn out was not just artists and performers. There were store owners in support of performers. One member of the council said he would love it if Silverman set up in front of his store on Duval Street. There were many ordinary citizens old and young that spoke in support of the charm of artists of all kinds. Peace,
Paul VanNess


  1. Please remind Paul that "Plumber's Butt" is not attractive to anyone except maybe other plumbers...ha ha ha

  2. Yes, since you pointed this out ....I notice it.I wasn't looking.

    It's curious that you were.