EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


June 10, 2014

Kimball Farm events director resigns

HAVERHILL — A top official with the Amesbury company that has been running large events at Kimball Farm the past two years has resigned her position in the wake of a series of controversies involving the East Broadway property.

Meredith Robinson, sales director for Front Office Events, said her decision to leave the Amesbury company has nothing to do with traffic problems at recent events she oversaw at Kimball Farm or the city’s decision to deny permits for three upcoming large events there. Front Office Events, which runs large events all over the country, is a spin-off of Amesbury Sports Park.

“I was planning to leave before any of this happened with Kimball Farm,” said Robinson, who declined to discuss whether she has a new job lined up. “It’s personal decision and I told people at the company a while ago this was coming.”

Nonetheless, Robinson said she is frustrated the city has not embraced events at the farm, which she said have been an economic boon for Haverhill businesses.

“I was involved with bringing events to Kimball Farm from the beginning,” Robinson said. “And I’m disappointed the city has not been more welcoming of these events, which bring thousands of people to Haverhill who go to local restaurants and hotels and other businesses. It’s a pity that Haverhill has not been more accepting of what these events do for the city and its businesses.”

Last week, City Council denied permits for Foam Fest, Dirty Girl Mud Run on July 19, and Mudderella on Sept. 6.

Councilors agreed to allow Sunday’s KidsFEST event to go on as scheduled because it was previously approved. By several accounts, KidsFEST was well attended and there were no reported traffic or parking problems.

Judy Kimball, the longtime owner of Kimball Farm, has said she is considering legal action in response to the council’s decision to reject the three upcoming events there.

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