Music event proposals get mixed reactions

By Emily Bialkowski

Caledonia Argus


When the Houston County Plan Commission met Feb. 28 two variance hearings were held, as well as two conditional use hearings. The renewal of a conditional use permit for mineral extraction was considered, as were multiple zoning permits.


Conditional uses

Tom Vix of Cushon’s Peak Campground in Houston Township requested an exhibition permit  for music events that generate more than 250 people. Each year Vix holds two Bluegrass music events and an occasional wedding. He requested permission to hold up to five events per year.

Zoning Administrator Bob Scanlan told the Houston County Board at their March 12 meeting that during the hearing a gentleman came forward against the request.

“One neighbor came and spoke about an incident,” Scanlan said. “Someone left the premises and came to his property. There was additional testimony from neighbors who were fine with it.”

The conditional use permit was unanimously granted.

In a similar request, Leonard Jr. and Holly Weiser of Yucatan Township asked to hold more events at their facility. They have had a permit since 2002, which allowed for up to three events, but now they are hoping to host more.

“Several neighbors came and spoke both for and against,” Scanlan said. “A lot of negative comments had to do with loud music, but what the plan commission did was table the request to have time to review further documentation.”

Commissioner Teresa Walter said concerns from the sheriff’s department about access to the property has to be considered.

“What the Weisers have done is widen a couple areas on that township road so vehicles can pass. They’ve done the best they can and taken money out of their own pocket, but it’s  good concern. They do have a set parking area for an ambulance or fire vehicles to pull right in during events,” Scanlan said.

No action was taken on the item. The plan commission will review the request again at its next meeting.


Permit renewal

Porteous Olson asked to renew his conditional use permit for mining and extraction in Houston Township. Olson has possessed the permit since 1992 and renews it every five years.

Commissioner Justin Zmyewski asked  if this request relates in any way to the current frac sand (or industrial sand) mining moratorium, and Scanlan said no. “There’d have to be reasons to deny it at this time. He’s not doing anything different,” Scanlan said.

The permit was renewed.



The plan commission recommended approval of two variance requests:

• Doug Thompson of Mound Prairie Township asked to build a new dwelling with a variance of 700 feet to meet the required quarter mile setback from a registered feedlot.

• Ben Lind of Sheldon Township asked to build an addition on his house with a variance of 30 feet to meet the required 130 foot setback from State Hwy. 76.

The board granted the requests.


Zoning permits

Several zoning permits received the county board’s stamp of approval and can be seen in the adjoining  graph.


February Zoning Permits

Gary Thomas, Spring Grove Township, build storage addition on existing pole shed

James and Susan Sobotta, Money Creek Township, build pole barn

Marion Lynch, Mound Prairie Township, Install mobile home

Daniel Griffin, Wilmington Township, Build garage addition and relocate grain bin

Lillian Heiller, Mayville Township, Build garage/shed

Troy Flatten, Money Creek Township, Administratively denied to build deck and carport

David Corcoran, Brownsville Township, Build pole shed and two storage sheds

David Studenski, Crooked Creek Township, Build ag building

James Holty, Spring Grove Township, Build shed with lean

Kermit Meyer, Wilmington Township, Build pole barn

David Winnes, Crooked Creek Township, Build machine shed

David Dahle, Houston Township, Build pole shed

Jim and Ron Holty, Spring Grove Township, Build grain bin

Tom and Arlene Hegge, Hokah Township, Build seasonal porch

Marvin Wunnecka, Crooked Creek Township, Build lean-to for ag equipment storage

Brad Olinger, Crooked Creek Township, Build pole barn addition