Wednesday, August 04, 2021

Road closure approved for Mineral Avenue trick-or-treating

Editor | July 20, 2021 7:00 AM

Annual trick-or-treating down Mineral Avenue will garner a road closure this year.

Libby City Council voted unanimously July 6 to approve the traffic restrictions, which came at the behest of the Libby Area Business Association. Gail Burger, representing the group, told city councilors last month that near misses with vehicles prompted the request.

“We heard the public outcry that that road needed to be closed for that event,” Burger said in June.

Though supportive, city councilors held off on making the decision then owing to insurance concerns. The annual event, which grew to include about 450 trick-or-treaters in 2020, originally was put on by local businesses and not by any one organization.

Burger told city councilors on July 6 that her organization had decided to seek the closures on behalf of local shops.

“It’s just an event that’s always happened and the Libby Area Business Association has stepped in because of the incident [last year] and said, ‘OK, let’s fix this,’” she said.

City Attorney Dean Chisholm, who was tasked with reviewing the situation last month, said that typically Libby requires insurance for similar events.

“It would always be best if we have a sponsoring entity and the entity would pay the couple of hundred bucks to pay for [an insurance] policy,” he said.

Burger said that local donors had provided money to cover the cost this year. In the future, the business association would oversee the trick-or-treating.

“Next year we will be prepared,” she said.

City Councilor Kristin Smith made the motion to approve the closures and colleague Brian Zimmerman offered a second.

The Oct. 31 closure will begin at 4 p.m. and last until 6 p.m., with barriers going up on Mineral Avenue at 3:30 p.m.