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Why Deny Deadheads Access?

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I attended the Grateful Dead concerts Saturday and Sunday at Irvine Meadows and would like to commend the Irvine Meadows staff, the security staff and the Irvine Police Department. They did an excellent job of crowd control and traffic control and were at all times that I saw extremely courteous, helpful and professional.

Newspaper headlines Sunday implied a near-riot, property destruction and widespread drug use. By Tuesday, however, Irvine Assistant City Manager Paul Brady, the Irvine Police Department and Irvine Meadows management were stating that incidents were few and isolated, blown out of proportion and no worse than any other event, except for the traffic mess compounded by the air show. This was our experience: great shows by the Dead, great event management, a great, well-behaved crowd, with only a few “rowdies” who are not fans of the band.

The Grateful Dead should be welcomed back to Irvine and should not be banned because of the actions of a few. Their annual shows add to our musical richness here in Orange County and generate considerable income to local businesses. What would make a difference would be much more responsible journalism--knock off the sensationalist stories about the life styles of a few that insult those of us who are responsible, active members of the community.

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BRUCE D. GILLINGS

Fountain Valley

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