Thursday, January 30, 2014

URGENT: Belle Isle Effectively Cancelling Pioneer Days

I just received the following urgent message from William Morgan, Chairman of the Pioneer Days Committee:
We were informed late last night by Commissioner Lydia Pisano that Belle Isle City Manager Keith Severns is orchestrating efforts to ensure we will not be able to celebrate our 40th anniversary festival next month.

This includes roping off much of the site, posting "no trespassing" signs, prohibiting access to the log cabin, and presenting us with $1,700 invoice for security services.

His actions are shocking not only because they are being sprung on us at the last minute, but also because we had always looked to the City of Belle Isle as one of our most important community partners.

It would appear Mr. Severns is intent on ending that relationship.

We were already scheduled to meet this evening at 6:30 at Edgewood City Hall to review the many ongoing aspects of the festival, and will still hold the meeting. Regrettably, the agenda has been cleared so we can discuss this grave development.
These last minute, unannounced actions by Belle Isle will prevent the 40th Anniversary Pioneer Days Festival from taking place next month. Even more troubling is that these actions appear to be premised on nothing more than City Hall's present animosity towards Commissioner Pisano, a long-time supporter of Pioneer Days.

If you love Pioneer Days as much as I do, here's what you can do to help:
  • Contact Mayor Brooks and our City Council members to tell them how you feel about Mr. Severns' actions in this matter.  Click here for contact info.
  • Attend the meeting at 6:30 p.m. tonight (Thursday) at Edgewood City Hall, located at 405 Larue Avenue (click for map).  Mr. Morgan welcomes all Belle Isle residents along with any assistance they can provide.


  1. Orange County government has stepped up to the plate to ensure the festival will NOT have to be cancelled. The event venue is moving just 2 miles north to CYPRESS GROVE PARK (290 West Holden Ave, 32809)

  2. From my experience it appears this Severns chap is an arrogant, condescending, out of control, power hungry, unelected petty bureaucrat. My opinion is he mostly works towards more regulations and bigger government.

  3. Tried to send an email to the Mayor at the email address provided. Received a failure notice. It said there was no address by that name. We appear to have a bully in our midst. A very well paid bully. Our taxes at work.

  4. Censureship? Term limits? Recall? Outright firing? It's PAST TIME to clean house!!!! Big fish in a little pond are doing a lot of damage to Belle Isle's reputation and position in the community. Belle Isle is becoming the laughing stock of Orange County - seems to always bring a wry smile to one's lips upon hearing the mention of the name - Belle Isle. Those in the know - know. It is shameful for this beautiful community to now have such negative small minded ego centered overpaid politicians destroying their reputation in the community.

  5. Can someone fill me in on the animosity between Pisano and City Hall?

  6. Severns obviously fears Pisano and the level of grassroots support she enjoys and can mobilize. He thought by bullying an organization she supports (Pioneer Days) that he was hurting her. They showed him, though!!

  7. These are the same commissioners who voted for him to be the city manager for no pay for 2 years, yeah right, he's making up for that. Why should anyone be surprised at the way the city is run with representatives like these

  8. Just dumb...really petty and dumb. They ought to fire this dude.


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