I'm confused about the Bed Race complaints
I know most people did not like the idea of the $5 cover charge, I didn't either, even though I got in for free, I originally did not like the new location either, and preferred the Center Grove location on Grand Avenue, but in the end, the new location was so much better. It was easier for people to see, there was breathing room and it just made sense on a wider street. The track was so much better on South Bayshore Drive.
It's amazing that people have been complaining about the street being closed for a few hours, and then having to pay to get on those streets, yet they think nothing of voting in favor of the Grove Bay Waterfront project that will block and tie up our precious waterfront for 80 years and worse, hand over the waterfront to private developers.
Having been on most of the committees in town, including the Great Grove Bed Race committee for years, I can tell you that the expense and logistics are enormous, events take months to plan. Unfortunately, the times we live in make it almost impossible to put on events yet we are lucky that people continue to put on events. The city services are way out of hand and funding is scarce. I hate the idea of paid admission to closed street events, but I understand them.
In South Miami, they had an art show this past weekend, there were three police officers on duty. Here when we do a similar size event, there are 35 cops on duty. The clean up crew is another story, events pay thousands of dollars just for garbage clean up. The Arts Festival pays almost $60,000 to the City for garbage clean up. If they could do it with a private company, the cost would be so much less. The cost to shut each street down is enormous and even the BID is considering raising the price for the street banners by double. And all that's just a portion of the costs.
As for the $5 fee to enter the Bed Race, kids under 12 were free, so basically a young family with a father, mother and kids could enter for $10, where only the parents paid. If only one parent went, it was $5 and the families got a big value for that $5, unlike so many festivals lately that charge you at the door to come in and eat and shop. This was literally a six hour show. I don't think many teens went with their parents, as teens typically don't.
People complained about parking fees, but we always have these parking issues, that's nothing new around here. I paid $6 for the whole day in one lot, I was there seven hours; that's less than the parking meters at $1.50 per hour.
As for this comment on our Facebook page: "Grove business's who have and do support this event were basically left out in the cold and our community event that we all look forward to every year was reduced to a joke..."
I'm not sure how it was reduced to a joke as it was bigger and better this year and only will get bigger and better in the new location, and as for Grove businesses being left out, how could this event even happen without the Grove businesses participating? I counted dozens of Grove businesses there having a great time. All the previous years' racers were there and so many new ones.
After the event, there was nowhere for people to go except up the hill into the Center Grove, where they stayed around, had dinner, drinks and spent money in the village. There is always that trickle down effect from events in Peacock Park.
I feel that the event was a success. If I felt differently, I would say so, as I have been honest about all the previous events this season.
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