Jazzland Axes "Spring Rap Up" - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Jazzland Axes "Spring Rap Up"

The financially ailing Jazzland Theme Park has canceled Spring Rap Up, less than a week after announcing the black spring break festival would be held on park grounds in April.

Jazzland officials issued a statement late Thursday saying that the park was unable "to prepare adequately for an event of the magnitude of Spring Rap Up'' due to the park's ongoing bankruptcy reorganization.

"Unfortunately, we've been slowed down by and presented with a number of challenges due to the reorganization process,'' general manager Terry Prather said in the statement. "We do not feel that the park will be prepared to handle an event of this size on April 5 and 6.''

Jazzland filed for federal bankruptcy reorganization on Feb. 28. In its bankruptcy filing, Jazzland Inc. said it has less than $50 million in assets and $50 million to $100 million in debts.

The park had billed Spring Rap Up as a celebration of hip-hop music and culture that would attract an audience of 40,000, mainly college students, much like Black Springbreak, a two-day collegiate party held the past two years in Biloxi, Miss. It was to include major musical acts, bikini contests, a step-show competition and a small Mardi Gras-style parade.

But New Orleans Police were cool to the idea of moving the event to Jazzland, in eastern New Orleans. Deputy Chief Marlon Defillo had the department was concerned about possible traffic problems, vague crowd estimates and overtime costs for officers assigned to the event.

Defillo was unavailable for comment Thursday.

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