The Dogwood Festival called off plans for a public protest in hopes of striking a deal with members of the Atlanta City Council to allow large festivals, including Atlanta Pride, back into Piedmont Park.

The Dogwood Festival Board of Directors initially urged supporters to attend the Aug. 18 Atlanta City Council meeting, but called it off at the last moment. Executive Director Brian Hill said Dogwood supporters would have been competing with more than 30 speakers who addressed the city on other pressing issues, including the closing of Fire House No. 7 in West Atlanta and the firing of a city arborist.

“It might not have gone our way,” Hill said.

Instead, Dogwood organizers met with a city councilmember they said is sympathetic to the festival’s plight. He did not respond to interview requests to verify his position.

Hill said his board is working with the councilmember to draft legislation allowing all Class A events, including Pride, Dogwood, the Peachtree Road Race and the city’s Jazz Festival, back into Piedmont Park next year.

Councilmember Anne Fauver, whose district encompasses Piedmont Park, said the decision will be made in October, following a report that considers drought conditions and the state of Piedmont Park’s hybrid Bermuda grass turf.

For the full article from Southern Voice, go here.