NYC Central Park musicians told to shut up

The News Leader

May 31, 2011 3:56:19 AM PDT
No more impromptu open-air concerts near Central Park's Bethesda Fountain.

New York City officials are muzzling musicians who perform near the fountain by slapping them with nuisance summonses.

Last week, the city posted a Quiet Zone sign by the stone arcade near the fountain, whose great acoustics have drawn top-notch musicians for about a century.

Fines for violations range from $50 to $200. The Department of Parks & Recreation police started issuing summonses at Bethesda Fountain last month.

Baritone John Boyd was arrested and handcuffed after ignoring five summonses. Boyd tells the New York Post he has a right to free speech.

Another Quiet Zone in Central Park is Strawberry Fields, a landscaped area dedicated to the memory of John Lennon, who lived nearby on Central Park West.