Honeygo Village Center Not to Host 2012 Town Fair

Store owners and managers complained about Perry Hall/White Marsh Town Fair crowds, a planner said.

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After a pushed the town fair from in 2009, it found a new home at Honeygo Village Center.

Two years later, however, fair planners no longer feel welcome at the shopping center, said Lynn Richardson, president of the .

Parking disputes and complaints from multiple store owners and managers during the July 9 fair have compelled the planning committee to find a new location for the 2012 , Richardson said.

"If they really think we are harming their businesses, I can't put anyone through that. ... We're about building business," she said. "We will have the fair next year, but I don't know where we're going to go."

This year's record-breaking attendance—estimated at more than 13,000—also brought an increased need for parking. The , , two fields and street parking were reserved to accommodate the influx of fair-goers.

But some parking spaces closest to the fairgrounds were intended only for shopping center customers and workers.

The fair's planning committee prevented fair vendors from parking outside the , Richardson said, but was not responsible for fair attendees who did not follow directions.

Weis Manager Greg Harper confronted Richardson and others about the parking situation during the fair, Richardson said. 

When contacted by Patch, Harper confirmed that he spoke to Richardson but refused to comment on the parking dispute.

William Matthew, owner of the shopping center's  franchise, also confronted fair planners about a parking dispute.

Richardson said store management had agreed to make the entire parking lot available for handicapped parking during the fair, but decided otherwise on the day of the fair.

Matthew said two-thirds of the store's parking was made available for the fair, but the last third was needed for customers and workers. He said he did not receive any increase in business during the fair and would prefer that it does not return to the shopping center. 

"Parking was very poorly handled," Matthew said. "To say we were not cooperative is a lie. I'm saddened we were not able to come to a resolution."

County Councilman David Marks, a member of the fair's planning committee, said he was disappointed by disputes with business owners.

"It's a great location. I would love to come back," Marks said during the fair. "It's unfortunate that a minority of business owners do not want us here."

Patrick Vitek, manager of , located at the corner of the shopping center, said the restaurant took advantage of fair crowds. "It was a hot day—we had a nice crowd in the bar and in the dining area," Vitek said.

"Parking wasn't crazy," he added. "We had to park in a far lot but it wasn't bad."

Richardson said her committee would begin searching for a new location immediately. She hopes the new location will accommodate more attractions, including a water slide and pony rides.

Laura July 19, 2011 at 02:41 PM
I have attended the fair the past two years at Honeygo Village and each time have noticed several stores that I didn't realize were there and now plan to shop at. It is ironic that only because of the complaints of a few merchants that the location will be changed. I agree with Megan Knauer that this is an excellent opportunity for businesses there.
Nixie July 19, 2011 at 02:51 PM
To the vendors that had such a problem, they should be a little more open minded about the fair and see the good it brought, more buisness and plus it is only for one day it is not an everyday gathering. This fair is to bring the community together and if people can't share then that does not send a good message, I'm sure you guys will find a better place next year, we do not need to deal with the scrooges that may dampen on a fun time. I do agree that someone should speak to maybe the regional manager of Harper and Matthews maybe higher ups will help them see the big pisture that they missed and maybe STOP BEING SCROOGES!!!!!!!
Lynn Richardson July 19, 2011 at 02:53 PM
The Perry Hall/White Marsh Business Association, organizer of this event, greatly appreciates the responses above from our community. We were VERY pleased that the majority of Honeygo Center tenants participated and wish for their continued success. We have evidence that even the businesses who exhibited adversarial behavior benefited from the fair's presence. Responses to our survey from vendors and guests have been very positive (survey is at www.perryhalltownfair.com). All suggestions are taken into consideration to make the Town Fair enjoyable for all. For 2012 our dilemma is space and safe parking for guests. With over 200 vendors now, an expanding kids area and my personal quest to get a place for ponies and the petting zoo once again, our options are indeed limited. Many of the suggestions made are not practical for reasons too complicated to detail here, but one or two have possibilities that will be considered. Many of the elements noted as missing, especially in venu's comment were included in this year's fair, in several locations, so I am not sure how they were missed by venu. The PHWMBA & Town Fair Committee is working to resolution to continue this event designed to bring the community together, provide a fun environment for families and showcase the artesans and local business owners who make Perry Hall & White Marsh a lovely place to be. --Lynn Richardson PHWMBA President/Town Fair Chairperson
SZ July 19, 2011 at 03:24 PM
The White Marsh Mall parking lot would be a good location. If there's enough room for that travelling carnival to set up then there is enough for the Town Fair. There is lots of parking there, especialy since some of the dept stores are still empty and not using their parking areas anyway. I bet the Mall and Avenue would be more than happy to get the foot traffic.
John K July 19, 2011 at 03:28 PM
So your suggestion is to have the Perry Hall Town Fair in Nottingham (borderline Rosedale) or in Middle River?!?!?! Since they are never going to develop that park they were using as a parking lot this year at Joppa/Honeygo, might as well use that.
Mark Patro July 19, 2011 at 03:37 PM
The White Marsh Mall parking lot, The lot across from target, and the empty industrial space behind Lowes are all outside of Perry Hall. If this is a Perry Hall "town fair" it should not be moved to White Marsh.
Tim July 19, 2011 at 03:53 PM
Honestly, I think it's laughable that businesses would p**s and moan about a one day event that promotes a good time for the local community - not to mention bring free advertising for their respective businesses. It's their loss, though. We see where priorities lie, though, don't we - Megan Knauer notwithstanding. I agree with Mark's early post about Perry Hall Shopping Center. Regardless of the traffic complications, I'd try it for a year and see how it went.
Rick July 19, 2011 at 04:17 PM
I just don't understand people. We should be thankful we even have this event. Who cares about the traffic or the inconveniences for a few hours. Other communities do this all the time - accepting a small inconvenience but realizing the benefits. I feel bad for all the businesses at Honeygo Village who supported the fair because it is going to be known that the shopping center (as a whole) was disgruntled. As a small business owner, this is not the type of press I would want.
chuck marks July 19, 2011 at 05:25 PM
Debby Sullivan July 19, 2011 at 06:15 PM
I am also, a small business owner @ Honeygo Village. Parking can be a problem any given day in the center (not only on the fair day). Customers complain all of the time as to limited handicapped parking, and parking in general. The fair did bring a lot of people to the center, who normally do not frequent there. This was a definite plus. The center was built 5+yrs ago, and somehow people still do not know it exists. We are thankful for increased sales the day of the fair, and the exposure the shopping center received. However, there could of been better communication between the fair organizers and the businesses on the strip. Last year the fair was set up on the back lot of the strip, This year, the fair was set up both front and back lot. This, of course brought fair-goers into the businesses this year. However, there was limited communication notifying the businesses of this. There were obvious wrinkles that needed to be ironed out. It is a shame that the problems cannot be worked out, as this is a positive event for the community.
Lynn Richardson July 19, 2011 at 06:38 PM
Just to be clear, this is the Perry Hall/WHITE MARSH Town Fair now, and has been for some years now. We cannot ignore our neighbors and friends who live & work in 21236 closer to "Old White Marsh" Still trying to keep the hometown community flavor, though. Sorry, Chuck, Perry Hall Park is too small, since we are not allowed to be on the grass. I welcome anyone here to join in the planning of the 2012 Town Fair. We begin meeting at the end of January. Send me your email and I will notify you to join the Town Fair Committee. lynn@phwmba.org
John Doe July 19, 2011 at 07:09 PM
If you have it at the Perry Hall Shopping Center, thousands of people would walk to it and would not need as much parking.
Emily Kimball (Editor) July 19, 2011 at 07:34 PM
See story about comments: Perry Hall/White Marsh Town Fair Location Stirs Up Comments, http://patch.com/A-kv9k
Mike Pierce July 19, 2011 at 07:53 PM
Now that we're forcing the school board to revise the policy for use of school facilities, it should be possible to hold the fair at the High School in 2012.
Linda Jenings July 20, 2011 at 12:37 PM
Sorry to have the fair leave the shopping center area....REALLY....why not market the crowds and have a table in front of the store.....We really enjoyed the fair there and liked how things were spread out..Come on One Day with people on your parking lot....Market the crowds like ALL of the other business......
John K July 20, 2011 at 02:23 PM
Hey Dunkin'... I came in with my two kids and bought a breakfast sandwich and Gatorade that I would NOT HAVE BOUGHT from you if it hadn't been for the PHTF. So you should quit your whining, and do like my friend suggested and put a table out front giving out coupons for a free donut with drink purchase or something like that. if you see 13k+ people in front of your store as an "annoyance" and not a "chance to make money," then you are a poor, poor businessperson.
Tim July 20, 2011 at 03:13 PM
All you can do is stop frequesting these places. Honestly, if Perry Hall would ever actually be home to a good bagel place, I'd have just about no reason to go there. Not that their bagels are good, but it's the only place I know of to get a cooked bacon/egg/cheese on a bagel. It's sad, Perry hall has a dozen pharmacies, half a dozen different supermarket chains, yet no Whole Foods type place and not a single real bagel joint. Talk about a blind spot in the market.
John K July 20, 2011 at 03:22 PM
Tim... that's why I go to Panera. May not be Einstein or Sam's, but better than DD.
Tim July 20, 2011 at 03:56 PM
John, I didn't even realize they did breakfast sandwiches. Although it's too far from me to get one and take it home, I'm on the other side of PH so to speak. I like their lunches but have to be careful as the sodim content of their foods - even breads - is through the roof :/
David Kromm July 20, 2011 at 05:45 PM
I was a food vendor that was placed at the children's area instead of the food area. I can't speak for the other food vendors, but we did not do well. While I heard other vendors were out of hot dogs, we just sat there in hopes that someone would find us. We knew the challenge going in, and hoped to combat it by distributing flyers, but were told we could not. By the way, we sold snack foods, including popcorn, caramel popcorn and cinnamon nuts.
Tim July 20, 2011 at 05:48 PM
We hit your stand though, the cinnamon nuts are awesome!
David Kromm July 20, 2011 at 06:23 PM
I agree, Perry Hall Shopping center would be good. Besides, they used to close the road when it was at the school.
David Kromm July 20, 2011 at 06:26 PM
Inconvenience! I wish I could get 15,00 people as a captive audience at the front door of my shop. I think time could have been better spent trying to take advantage of a good situation instead of whining.
David Kromm July 20, 2011 at 06:30 PM
How could you not know of the fair organizers plans. They were posted on their web site with a clear map. And I am sure they contacted the shopping center of their plans. Although I was not happy with my booth placement, I have to say that they were very organized and informative. If someone cannot take advantage of this situation, gthey should have just closed for the day instead of complaining
susan July 21, 2011 at 02:57 AM
Matthews business is horrible. DD/BR is dirty n employees are lazy. he lost my business for life n the other 13,000 people that were at the fair! duh marketing is key to success
Tim July 21, 2011 at 02:04 PM
Yeah, not that frequent their establishment at all, but I can assure you I'll never set foot into that particular one again. Or any other franchises he runs if I'm made aware of it.
Fullerton Self Storage July 21, 2011 at 03:18 PM
I have had a vendor table at the Town Fair for three years and have had the pleasure of knowing Lynn Richardson for that period of time as well. I have no doubt that if the Fair needs to be moved, Lynn and her committee will find a good spot that will be workable for the majority of all involved. Every time that I participate in this event I am more amazed at the amount of work that this group does and the excellent organizational skills that they display! While I have been very pleased with this location, mostly because it has been so easy to get into, set up and break down, as long as Lynn and her crew are behind it, I will follow the event to whatever location they choose! Hats off to Lynn Richardson and all of the members of the Perry Hall White Marsh Business Association! You do an excellent job! Karrie Barresi Property Manager Fullerton Self Storage
Rudy Solorzano July 22, 2011 at 11:44 PM
First of all the facts have to be straightened out. 1. Event cordinator did not meet with all businesses in the shopping center 2. Did not received any lay out of the event or the parking areas if there was a web site we should of been made aware of but of course event cordinator never told US!!! 3.Mrs. Richardson made call to busineses two to three days about the parking lot for dunkin donuts which own part of the area that she used and failed to mention that the dunkin donutsgave her permission to use. Then decided she also wanted the parking area infront of the business!!! 4.if parking was an issue which it was for weis they should of handed out parking tickets limited for time if not met they got a ticket thats how you solve that. 5.Lynn need to be replace if you ever need to see how an event is run check out the HON Fest Thats how an event is run. 6. You don't let other people that have the same things in the festival, in the festival or pick their spots, thats not a choice! 7.Its very unprofessional of Mrs. Lynn Richarson to go on record and not stating the facts about the town center. 8.Vendors also complained of where they were being thrown in in areas they didnt belong. 9. Instead of fixing the problems to keep the fair in the shopping center, she just gives up but of course thats what you do when you don't know how to run an event!!!!!! Chrome Salon Owner
Rudy Solorzano July 22, 2011 at 11:57 PM
10.both the event cordinator and the landlord should of met with the business owners of what to expect neither did that. 11. We do appreciate that the town fair brought new faces to the shopping center. 12. IF THE TOWN FAIR EVENT CORDINATORS WOULD OF MET WITH AT LEAST ONE PERSON IN THE SHOPPING CENTER TO BE IN CHARGE OF HELPING OUT THAT MIGHT OF HELP IN THIS SITUATION. THIS CAN BE SOLVED VERY EASILY INSTEAD OF BEING A ONE PERSON CORDINATING EVERYTHING.
Toni Delano August 22, 2011 at 08:37 PM
What about checking into White Marsh Mall parking lot. They have a carnival there every year for a week straight & the parking doesn't effect the mall.


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