Satsuma’s annual Christmas parade is facing a bit of controversy this year. The trouble involves the arts and crafts festival that is held in conjunction with the parade each year. Several citizens have taken to Facebook with complaints of being turned down for a booth at the festival.
The arts and crafts festival is run by the Satsuma Community Development Organization. Long time SCDO member Linda Tindle responded on Facebook to some of the complaints. Mrs. Tindle explained that it has been long established that the organization tries to limit the number of booths selling the same food items. The application form even mentions that some vendors may be denied. The stated reason for this policy is to prevent vendors from cannibalizing each other’s profits. Mrs. Tindle stressed that this policy only applied to food items.
Many citizens were not satisfied with the explanation, and are demanding changes. They feel that all booths should be welcomed.
The SCDO appears to have had good intentions with their original policy, but it may be time to change it. Protecting vendors is a nice sentiment, but we do ultimately live in a capitalist society that depends on competition and free markets. A bitter public fight and bad publicity are the last things that need to be attached to the festival, which is a popular event in the city each year.