XENIA — City of Xenia officials feel like they are ready for Hamvention to roll into town May 19-21.
But because it’s the first time the international event will be at the Greene County Fairgrounds, they aren’t totally sure what to expect. More than 200 hours have been spent in various planning and operational meetings, according to city spokesman Lee Warren. And next week public service employees will spend some time hanging banners on light poles and across Main Street downtown.
It’s estimated that public safety overtime will total $20,000 Warren said. But other than that, the impact of having 30,000 people in Xenia is unknown until it happens.
“We don’t know until we get into this thing,” Warren said.
Traffic is most likely going to be the biggest variable. The city and township sent a letter to residents advising them of what are thought to be the peak times for traffic issues. They are: 7-10 a.m. and 3-7 p.m. May 19; 7-10 a.m. and 2-6 p.m. May 20; and 7-10 a.m. and 12-4 p.m. May 21.
Also residents are advised to avoid Fairground Road and intersections at Purcell, Ankeney Mill and Detroit Street. Parking will be restricted and traffic will be limited to residential traffic only on Omalee, Roselawn, Angela, Catherine, Harbine, Florence and portions of North King.
Cell phone reception could be compromised at times as well but Hamvention organizers have taken steps to minimize that, according to the letter.
Despite the potential negatives, officials know thousands will be pumping money into the local economy via restaurants and retail shops.
“We see that as quite a positive thing,” Warren said. “We’re excited about the fact that we’re going to have this international exposure.”
Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.