Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityRockefeller Twp saying no more concerts to Spyglass Winery right before festival weekend | WOLF
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Rockefeller Twp saying no more concerts to Spyglass Winery right before festival weekend

Spyglass Ridge Winery{p}{/p}
Spyglass Ridge Winery

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A popular winery's hot air balloon festival is at risk of being shut down.

The township says the winery may be breaking a zoning ordinance.

Owners Thomas and Tammy Webb of Spyglass Ridge Winery started hosting concerts 18 years ago and since, their festivals have grown into a staple, bringing business to the community.

"This weekend with the balloon festival will literally be our 85th show in our backyard," Thomas Webb said.

On September 30th, the Rockefeller Township sending the owners of Spyglass a letter saying Webbs were breaking the township's agriculture ordinance.

"We got the letter last week that if we have our hot air balloon festival which is actually a fundraiser. We are raising money for local non-profits all the proceeds go to the non-profits in the area and that they are going to come to the property and shut us down," Webb explained.

In the letter, the Rockefeller Township's representing attorney James Best stating the Webbs can operate the winery as a place which turns grapes into wine, but...

"The use of the winery to host festivals and concerts far exceed even a broad understanding of agricultural activities. The township did not object to Webb’s retail and private venue activities but never permitted them either,” Best wrote.

The letter also stating that "there has never been a legal issued raised regarding zoning and property until the 30th," Best wrote.

That is why the letter was sent now.

Webb sees this letter as a relation from ordinances the township tried to make 5 years ago towards the free camping he offers on the property. Camping which Webb says is made up of workers and performers for the events.

"When we challenged that ordinance the township seems to want to retaliate so here we are they are threatening to shut us down completely," Webb said.

Webb explained if the event does not happen this weekend not only will the non-profits lose out on the fundraiser, but the money spent on talent, balloonist and income for vendors will be lost as well.

A ruling will be made by a Northumberland County judge before the start of the festival this weekend on if a hearing will be held or if an injunction will be granted so the event can still go on as planned.

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When reaching out to the the Rockefeller Zoning board the zoning officer had no comment on the letter.

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