HUDSON, Colo. (KDVR) — According to the Weld County Sheriff’s Office, calls started coming in around 4 p.m. on Sunday about a loud party and traffic on CO Highway 52.
WCSO says Carlos Barkleys is the promoter for the band La Zenda Norteña, one of the bands playing a concert at 4312 WCR 37. A flyer was posted on his Facebook page about the event that had moved locations a few times before showing up where they are playing on Sunday.
Elbert County said on Thursday they denied a group that wanted to hold a concert there but didn’t go through the proper permitting process.
Weld County then heard they were attempting to gain access to an address the sheriff’s office had issues with in the past. WCSO sent a sergeant to attempt talking the owner out of allowing the concert to take place there and met with the property manager, who gave the band permission.
When WCSO reached out to the owners of the property on Friday to let them know what was going on, they told officers they did not want to allow the event on their property.
WCSO did not know where the location was going to end up being until they began getting calls at 4 p.m. on Sunday.
About a month or two ago, county commissioners removed the permitting process for large events in Weld County, according to WCSO.
“Because there’s no permitting process, there’s really not a ton they can do. Attendees are not breaking the law just by being there,” Joe Moylan, WCSO Public Information Officer said. “They are keeping an eye on the situation and are expecting about 2,000 people to show up.”
WCSO said it would not enforce Gov. Polis’ mandatory mask-wearing mandate last week. “We don’t view them as law. We’ve taken the position of encouraging voluntary compliance with these things, but it’s hard to do with 2,000 people in one place,” Moylan said on Sunday.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment made this statement in reaction to the event:
“We rely on event organizers to follow state law, and we rely on local officials to help with enforcement. If local authorities aren’t enforcing local or state orders, the state can issue a cease and desist order. Weld County Sheriff is on scene and a Colorado Office of Emergency Management representative is en route to the event. Mass gatherings, especially without physical distancing or mask wearing, are particularly irresponsible.”CDPHE