State shuts down plans for elaborate Castle Island event

"Summer Splash" was planned for June 23, but organizers did not request a permit.

Castle Island was set to host a controversial event this summer, before the state shut it down over a lack of the proper permit. John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

Soon after tickets were sold for a flashy party on Castle Island, the event was shut down by the state this week. 

The event, known as Summer Splash, was being planned for June 23, NBC 10 Boston reported. Tickets were being sold for $25 and guests were going to have access to live music, dunk tanks, and water balloon fights, according to Caught in Southie

When the flier hit social media, locals immediately voiced their confusion to lawmakers,  specifically Sen. Nick Collins and State Rep. David Biele. Residents were confused because Castle Island closes at 8 p.m., and the event was advertised as going until 11 p.m. They also wondered how the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) could issue a permit for a for-profit event, according to Caught in Southie. 


As it turns out, DCR did not issue any permits for the event, and organizers had gone ahead with advertising anyway. When contacted about the event, a DCR spokesperson confirmed that the department was made aware of Summer Splash from social media postings. A DCR permit was not even requested by the organizer, they added. 

DCR proceeded to contact the event organizer to inform them that they were not authorized to hold an event at Castle Island, the spokesperson said. The organizers then told DCR that they were canceling plans to host the event, and would notify all those who had already received correspondence about it. The spokesperson did not name the event’s organizer. 

The incident echoes a similar situation that surrounded an event known as Fright Island, that was being planned for the same area, NBC 10 Boston reported. This Halloween-centric event would have lasted an entire month, and included a variety of outdoor “scare zones,” a carnival, and more. 

It was pitched to DCR, but local residents sent letters, emails, and organized community meetings in opposition, NBC reported. Public safety and the improper use of a historic landmark such as Fort Independence were cited as reasons for canceling the event. 


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