Downtown Havre de Grace was recently decorated for Christmas, an effort recognized by Havre de Grace City Council members at their meeting Monday night. (BRYNA ZUMER | AEGIS STAFF, Bryna Zumer / December 5, 2012)

Bathrooms at the Seafood Festival became a sticky topic for the Havre de Grace City Council Monday.

The proximity of portable toilets to some homes made some residents upset during last year's festival, according to some comments Council President Randy Craig said he got about the festival, which is set to run Aug. 9 to 11 next year.

He proposed relocating the bathrooms, as well as requiring the back fencing to be removed by 10 a.m. Saturday and closing Commerce Street from Union Avenue to the Yacht Basin entrance.

He also said he felt it was more appropriate to move trash containers with the seafood trash into the Yacht Basin instead of by Commerce Street.


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Craig said he asked organizer Lori Maslin to prepare an updated map of the festival and she complied.

Joe Fiocchi, who lives on Commerce, said when he woke on the morning of the festival, five toilets were right outside his home.

He also said a tour bus parked in front of his home for nine hours and a storage trailer sat in front of the home for the entire festival.

Fiocchi asked the council to make sure the toilet placement especially complies with sanitary laws.

Councilman David Glenn said he wants to see the bathrooms moved from the playground area or dispersed if possible.

Maslin noted the festival gets seven or eight toilets.

She said that with all due respect to the three neighbors on Commerce who were affected, she has been running the event for years and does not set out to make their lives miserable.

The toilets are placed in a logistically appropriate place, she said.

Council members brought up other festival concerns.

Joe Smith wanted to see more security to prevent drinking outside the festival, which Mayor Wayne Dougherty assured the police would handle.

Maslin said anyone with alcohol will have to wear an armband this year and the event will have specific liquor compliance staff.

"We did have somewhat of a breakdown with people getting through our fencing with alcohol still in a cup," she said. "Our alcohol compliance is going to be at the gates this year."

Councilman Bill Martin, however, thanked the organizers for coordinating the event, which will be in its 33rd year.

"I've always been a big supporter of the seafood festival," he said. "You're always going to have problems when you bring in the general public in those kinds of numbers."

Craig said it was important to raise the issues of the council before the public, and to address the concerns of residents like Fiocchi.

Smith also suggested considering a way to eventually get traffic from the park to downtown, to encourage festival attendees to shop downtown.