In a decision favorable to the Torch Lake Protection Alliance, a Kalkaska County judge has prohibited key promoters of the increasingly raucous Fourth of July Torch Lake sandbar party from promoting, sponsoring, and/or organizing the annual two day event. Ruling that the increasingly noisy and disruptive Fourth of July Sandbar Party Bash violated several Michigan laws including the Inland Lakes and Streams Act, the Marine Safety Act, the Environmental Protection Act as well as township zoning ordinances, the judge’s decision prohibits promoters from holding future sandbar parties without providing adequate crowd control, noise control, trash, sanitation, and security measures. The court’s action follows a particularly raucous 2015 event that led to forty five primarily alcohol related medical emergencies, and several dozen arrests for disorderly conduct, and operating a watercraft or motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Based on aerial photos, United States Coast Guard Air Station-Traverse City officials estimated that the 2015 Fourth of July sandbar party was attended by 8,000.
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