Arts Factory owner Wes Myles says city fees and what he calls an overbearing bureaucracy for events downtown are out of control and it might drive him out of Las Vegas. Myles purchased the Arts Factory in 1996 and says he's exploring opportunities in other cities. Myles told the Review Journal a new requirement by the City of Las Vegas that he pay for additional police protection during events like First Friday was the last straw and now the cost is no longer worth it. According to the Review Journal Myles has since cancelled vendors, performers, porta potties and other logistics he planned and paid for the May 4 First Friday festival. City of Las Vegas officials insist they have lowered fees for events and streamlined the application process.
Meantime the Zappos-backed group that purchased the First Friday say they understand the frustration with paying city fees but want to explore different solutions to cut down on the high cost of security. We talk with Wes Myles and First Friday Las Vegas managing partner Joey Vanas about the state of First Friday.
Wes Myles, owner, Arts Factory
Lily Berman, Pick Up America