Red Sox Neighborhood Meeting Builds Bridge Between Residents and the Park

By Beth Treffeisen

Bright T.V. screens boosted red and white slides as classic game day hot dogs and hamburgers were being served in the back. Up front, David Friedman, the legal senior vice president for the Red Sox took the stage, pointing out the events and the possible post-season game-day schedule to the audience.

“We are thinking of a lot of issues and how we affect you with events,” said Friedman. “It is only early September so there are still a lot of games to play.”

About 40 community members and city officials packed into the Wheels Up Clubhouse during an away game night at Fenway Park this past Wednesday evening to learn about the park’s plans and to voice their concerns about upcoming events.

As of right now, Fenway Park is focusing on finishing the season and giving the proper farewell to David Ortiz who to some is better known as Big Papi after his final game. They are also gearing up for the possible post-season schedule going into October.

“They do a lot of stuff in the community,” said Sarah Nailor a resident of Fenway since 1987. “And they really open it up.”

Nailor voiced how she enjoys the Neighborhood Nine Program that allows residents to get un-sold tickets day-of during games and likes how the Red Sox are reaching out to the community to hear their concerns.

During the question and answer session of the meeting one big unanimous concern arose from the residents – concerts that are just too loud.

“There’s too many concerts,” said Freddie Veikley from the Garden Club of the Back Bay Fens. “It’s the only time of the year we have the chance to do what we want, enjoy our garden.”

Veikley said that when she was in her garden she couldn’t even talk to her neighbor and could feel the bass vibrating from the park.

“The number of concerts is too many,” Veikley continued. “It’s taking away our freedom.”

One resident said the concert noise is inescapable even with air conditioning and fans on, but it does depend on where you live in Fenway and which way the wind is blowing.

This year the Red Sox hosted 11 concerts, which was a new record and boasted artists such as Billy Joel, the Zac Brown Band, Paul McCartney and James Taylor. Friedman noted they still have no idea how many concerts they will be having next year.

“The businesses will love it but residents we know would like to see a little less and we will keep that in mind,” said Friedman.

Residents voiced how they wish they would just say “no” to having some concerts held there and try to spread them out.

In response Friedman said, “It is dependent on the baseball season and we are conscious of leaving some days with some free time.”

This weekend the Red Sox will be playing the Yankees at Fenway Park before they travel to Baltimore to play the Orioles

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