When the drums stop beating

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The Times has a story today about police making rounds of the infamous Treasure Island drum circle following residents’ complaints about underage drinking and drug use.

I can’t say that I’m surprised.

When I visited the drum circle last summer (and a few times since) somehow I knew it couldn’t last for long: a non-sanctioned gathering of enthusiastic musicians playing instruments that some people might associate with hippies and drug use.

(Interestingly enough, one of the residents leading the charge is satirist Gary Becker, whom CL profiled in April. Becker has a blistering, but humorous, screed on his Web site concerning the drummers.)

But it will be a shame if Treasure Island residents, apparently more comfortable with lame Jimmy Buffett cover bands, run out the beach bohemians. At worst, the drum circles provide a great opportunity to people-watch. At best, they add some flavor to the increasingly bland beach environs.

Already there are few things for teens to do in Pinellas County, and really, shutting out the drummers won’t stop underage drinking and drug use — those kids will still be there when the drummers leave. Or end up closer to your backyard.

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