I’m excited and thankful about everything you guys are doing up at Krug. The timing appears to be near perfect as I have had a few recent discussions with city staff regarding the possibility of sponsoring some type of annual bike festival in an effort to promote the city’s park system as well as community wellness. In my opinion, Krug Park is the ideal location for the center of activities. I’m thinking in terms of XC racing, a starting/stopping point for road racing, trials comp/demo, beginner clinics, live music and food… or perhaps awards, music, food, videos, raffles, etc at the civic arena after the races whereby alcohol could be served/consumed, since it’s illegal in the parks.
Please understand that I don’t have the authority to make promises or commit resources on behalf of the City of St. Joseph. Staff has asked for my input and will likely rely on that input when making decisions as it pertains to the city’s involvement, if any. At this point, it appears that Parks and Recreation Director, Bill McKinney will have to grant permission as it pertains to many key aspects of bike related activities in the parks. Naturally, the city council may have some involvement depending on the nature and extent of city finances and other resources. I believe some of you may have worked with Mr. McKinney on various elements up to this point.
I have not spoken with him regarding the use of Krug Park for a bike related festival/event. I would like to make sure that all of us are on the same page and fully supportive of all activities that may be pursued. I think most of you know that my interest is in observed trials, thus I would like to pursue that aspect of the big picture, however I will not go it alone as I believe biking venues and events are made better by complimenting activities. I believe that perhaps the biggest part of growing any sport is reaching out to the spectators who, depending on what they see and hear may decide to get involved themselves… especially the kids… pull them away from the video games.
Simply put, not everyone wants to sit around watching a trials rider like me struggling to get over a rock and not everyone wants to stand beside a trail waiting for an XC rider to come by… but, when you put everything together and provide options, people start to feel the “Vibe” that all of us love. How many times have you heard people say, it wasn’t the race or the comp that made it cool, it was the before and after, it was the people, the whole scene, the “Vibe”. Thanks to many of you, St. Joe now has an awesome trail system that keeps getting better.
So, here’s my question for all of you… and responses are needed… Would you support this type of event and be willing to meet with and speak to the necessary people to get the wheels turning? My sincere apologies if this is something that you’re already working towards and I just haven’t heard about it. We must have a unified group approach with as many supporters as we can get… even if it’s just someone willing to say, “Yes, I would like to see this in St. Joseph.”
This post is not intended to be all inclusive by any means. Just wanted to get the discussion started in a format that everyone can view and provide input. Again, I make no promises on behalf of the city, nor has the city committed to anything at this point. Given the current economy, there’s no telling what kind of support there may be in the coming months.
I'd love to sit down and have a face to face discussion with everyone at some point if possible.