16 Jun 2022 RAINBOW GATHERING
This year marks the 50th Anniversary of the Rainbow Gathering, the world’s largest non-organization of non-members. The Spring Council began meeting this week to determine the best location, and this year’s choice is Adams Park to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of where it all started – in Colorado. The gathering is officially set for July 1-7.
Many of these families are focused on World Peace, ecology, spirituality, and inclusion.
These gatherings usually occur over the 4th of July week and take place in National Forests, thus fall under Federal control and jurisdiction. Almost all of the activities are peaceful and reflect the theme of World Peace.
A plethora of information can be found on this group:
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT
This is a well-documented group that has a polarizing effect on communities where it gathers. We are anticipating 10,000+ gatherers traveling to/from the meeting location.
Starting on June 13th until the conclusion of event (~July 10th), you can expect people to begin gathering in Adams Park in Medicine Bow Routt National Forest.
According to the Facebook Group, there are 2 recommended routes:
Expect these roads to be incredibly congested, and we recommend you find alternate routes. We anticipate that the traffic will be heaviest the week leading up to July 1st and then the week after starting, July 8th.
During the duration of this event, you can expect gatherers to come into Hayden and neighboring town for food, water, and necessities. While we welcome people from all walks of life to our community, we will not tolerate any disrespect to our community or environment. At the same time, we will never sacrifice the community values of treating everyone with respect and equality. A majority of the people that go to the Rainbow Gathering are respectful to the communities that they visit; however, some are not respectful and we are preparing to deal with those folks. We expect all neighbors and visitors to treat each other & our planet with the utmost kindness & respect.
Another risk to the area is an increase in both stray and lost animals, especially dogs. Please report these animals for their & your protection.
If you see any suspicious or inappropriate behavior, please call the Hayden police: 970-276-3232
If there is an emergency, do not hesitate to call 911.
HOW WE'RE PREPARING
While the purpose of the group is to celebrate each other & our beautiful world, groups of this size (this year’s expected attendance is 30,000 people) can create great stress on the natural & community environments that they inhabit.
While a very large majority of this Gathering will fall to the U.S. Forrest Service and the Routt County Sheriff’s offices to handle, the Town of Hayden and the Hayden Police Department are working with our partners at the local, regional, state and federal level in order ensure this is a positive and minimally impactful event.
The USDA Forest Service has issued this statement:
Fire and animal safety is a high priority for all of us, and to ensure the highest level of safety for everyone, we’re working closely with the Fire Department and Department of Natural Resources to create a plan for mitigating damage to our county.
Our Police Department is creating a plan that will ensure appropriate staffing and responsiveness to protect our neighbors.
Local businesses will be working together to ensure safety protocols are in safe to keep buildings and employees safe.
DURING THE EVENT
Safety is the primary consideration during the time of the greatest influx of gatherers, and the best way to maintain community safety is to educate yourself and others. The Town of Hayden has created this Summer Crime Prevention Guide to help all of us stay safe. A couple of tips from this sheet are relevant particularly to Business Owners:
- You can refuse service to anyone (within the law) but great customer service is your best line of safety.
- Limiting the # of customers in your store could be beneficial
- Prohibiting backpacks and other large items where merchandise can be hidden is a great idea
- Whatever your rules are, clearly post them so that all customers
- Limit access to restrooms
- Watch for, and guard against, short-change schemes. Take time with any cash transaction and attempt to ignore distractions while working with cash
- Consider doubling your efforts to verify identification on controlled purchases
- Limit the amount of cash in your drawer or till at all times
- Grocery Stores: Protect your fresh produce from tampering
- Gas Stations: With the cost of gas far exceeding anyone’s wildest imagination, it is likely that gas theft will be attempted through many different means. The best advice that can be given is…if the pump isn’t activated by a card…do not authorize sale
- Restaurants: When possible, have patrons pre-pay for their meals
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Working together, we can keep each other safe throughout this event. While we are doing our part, there are pieces that you can do:
- Avoid the California Park area – it will be incredibly congested. Staying away will help prevent further damage & conflict.
- Avoid the travel routes of the gatherers.
- If you see any suspicious or inappropriate behavior within the Town Limits, please call the Hayden non-emergency police line: 970-276-3232.
- If the non-emergency need is in unincorporated Routt County, please call the Routt County Sheriff’s Office at 970879-1090.
- If there is an emergency, do not hesitate to call 911.
- Be diligent about locking your house and vehicles over the next month.
- Be respectful to these visitors – both online & in-person.
- Stay informed. Sign-up for the Hayden emails where updated communication will be sent regularly.
Emails will be sent regularly to update our neighbors on any news regarding this event. Signing up will ensure you get the latest news right in your Inbox.