Neighbours of Haines Junction bakery want court to limit volume, duration of summer concerts

The Yukon courthouse in Whitehorse. (Paul Tukker/CBC - image credit)
The Yukon courthouse in Whitehorse. (Paul Tukker/CBC - image credit)

Three Haines Junction residents have taken the Village Bakery and Deli to court over the volume and duration of live music at the venue during the summer.

Valerie Drummond, Daniel Drummond and John Carney filed a statement of claim to the Yukon Supreme Court on April 27.

They're seeking an interim injunction limiting the volume of live outdoor music to 55 decibels — about the volume of a washing machine — as measured from the nearest neighbouring property and a 9 p.m. cut-off.

The plaintiffs, along with another neighbour, have raised concerns for years that some performances during the bakery's popular annual summer outdoor concert series on Friday and Saturday evenings, have been unreasonably loud and gone on too late.

"It seems we have exhausted all avenues of addressing our concerns … and our only resource is through this injunction," Valerie Drummond wrote in a May 8 affidavit.

A statement of defence has not been filed yet.

Bakery co-owner Rhonda Powell said in an email she hadn't heard of the lawsuit and had no comment.

She told CBC News earlier this year that while she was aware of the concerns, she felt conversations about the concerts had become overly-confrontational and the complaints were overblown.

"It's just not that loud," she said at the time.

In her affidavit, Valerie Drummond, who lives a short distance from the bakery and also operates a rental cabin business nearby, said she and other concerned neighbours weren't trying to "shut down" the music nights, but simply wanted them "moderated."

Her husband agreed in a separate affidavit, writing that they'd "never asked for an end to the Village Bakery and Deli's concerts or any reduction in the number of concerts."

"We only wanted moderation of the loud performances and a firm stop time for amplified music," Daniel Drummond wrote, adding that he'd had numerous meetings and communication with the village, the bakery and concert sponsors with no success.

The request for an interim injunction, he continued, was the "last avenue available to me to deal with this issue and come to a timely resolution before the 2023 Summer Music Series commences."

Daniel Drummond also argued the terms of the interim injunction weren't unreasonable, noting most concerts during the 2022 season ended around 9 p.m. anyway and that by his measure, 16 of the 28 concerts had a "reasonable" volume.

A hearing of the application for the interim injunction is scheduled for June 27.