ATLANTIC BEACH, SC (WBTW) – The town of Atlantic Beach is preparing for more than just Bikefest. Crews were out Wednesday setting up for the town’s “Paradise Party Compound” concert it’s planning for Memorial Day weekend.
The artists scheduled to perform at the concert series, however, has changed from what Atlantic Beach Town Manager Benjamin Quattlebaum presented in April.
Atlantic Beach Police Chief Tim Taylor says rap artist Young Joc will be in town for the event, and a Facebook page promoting the Paradise Party Compound says Young Joc will not only perform, but he will host the event.
Chief Taylor says hip-hop artists like Young Joc are likely to bring in a younger crowd. Officials are expecting upwards of 3,000 people for the beach concerts and part of the event set up is considering how to properly secure the area from potential dangers.
“We’re expecting a large crowd,” states Chief Taylor. “Speaking with people that’s putting on these concerts, they’re getting a large number of tickets being sold now. So, we’re definitely looking at a bigger crowd for Bikefest this year.”
Crews have been working since Monday to set up for the concert in Atlantic Beach, and people from as far away as England are here to see what Bikefest is all about.
“I heard lots of stars are going to be here,” expresses Cleveland Angus, who traveled from England for the event. “I heard about them for a while now because they used to be up in New York once in a while, so I’m looking forward to seeing them.”
The musical artists Angus and others like him are excited to see, however, were not mentioned in the list of acts when News13 spoke with Atlantic Beach leaders in April.
Town Manager Benjamin Quattlebaum said the town was planning to bring jazz, gospel, and R&B acts to attract an eclectic crowd who would stay in Atlantic Beach longer, rather than just riding through the small town.
The latest act promoted for the Paradise Party Compound, Young Joc, who had will likely attract a different crowd. The Atlanta, GA, native had rap singles like, “It’s Going Down,” and “I Know You See It.”
Chief Taylor says while law enforcement is prepared for the younger crowd, bikers who have been coming to the area for generations say they hope the younger riders don’t bring the crime with them.
“Sometimes the young people got a little wild edge on them and sometimes I wish they could kind of keep it muffled down,” admits Charles Bailey, biker from North Carolina.
Chief Taylor explains he flew to classes in Fort Lauderdale, FL to learn how to handle big concerts and events in preparation for Paradise Party Compound.
“We talked about concerts, how to deal with them, how to interact with the crowd, and how to get people out of here safe in case we have an event here,” confirms Chief Taylor.
Chief Taylor says the town has requested assistance from SLED, South Carolina Highway Patrol, and deputies from the Horry County Sheriff’s Office that have helped in Atlantic Beach in years prior, and officers have a game plan to handle the concert should things get out of hand.
“We’ll be just fine,” Chief Taylor predicts. “I’ve always had that approach for the last three years that we’re going to treat people with respect, everybody’s welcome, and we’re all going to try to get along, but the ones that want to come and cause problems here in Atlantic Beach, which we don’t have, then we’ll deal with them in a different way.”
The flyer promoting concert acts says music will be Thursday through Sunday from “9pm-until,” but Chief Taylor says officers plan to shut the event down by 2 a.m. each morning as part of their security plan.
News13 reached out multiple times to Atlantic Beach Town Manager Benjamin Quattlebaum to try to understand the how and when the concert line-up changed, but neither our calls nor our emails were returned.