Monday, May 8, 2017

See ya, Dogwood Carnival

Fifth and Maine Sunday night. 
I GOT BACK last night from working for Gus Macker in Cape Girardeau, Mo. I was in a great mood. Sheryl and I went downtown to check on the store and see how things looked after the Dogwood Carnival torpedoed our normal Saturday business.

Would you like a side of curly fries too?
My mood turned sour. Almost as sour as the barbecue simmering on our sidewalk, with a side of curly fries festering nearby. Sheryl was ticked off too - she had an ugly encounter Saturday with a parent who was cursing in front of our store doors, and it didn't end well, and reflected very poorly upon the event. She closed early and had a much better rest of the day with three dogs and a cat. And peace and quiet.

I wouldn't have even opened the store. It's early Monday afternoon and I've already tripled the business we did Saturday. It kills us to lose the business, especially because of an event that has no economic impact for Quincy.

Back to Sunday night - the streets were full of debris. The southeast corner of Washington Park looked like a bomb had gone off in it. You couldn't even walk up the park gazebo steps because they were littered with crap. Food, cups, plates, gunk, everything. The streets were covered in noxious liquid spills.

It was unbelievable.

Bret Austin was there, and he was calling people. WGEM showed up and did this interview with me. I didn't act this angry during the whole thing, but it's accurate, and you can tell I'm obviously pissed off.

WGEM came back again this morning to do a followup. It's been a crazy morning and early afternoon, to say the least.

Thank you to the Quincy Park District for the quick response and for cleaning things up, and for the District volunteers doing the same. By the time I got down here about 9 this morning, the park was clean and the streets were getting that way..

The Dogwood Carnival must go. I'm talking to my fellow business owners on the square and getting a petition together. I am planning to attend a City Council meeting, maybe even a week from tonight, to urge our aldermen to not let the carnival back to Fifth and Maine.

Every other event down here cleans up. The notion that "it got cleaned up this morning" and that "people are pigs and should clean up themselves" is insipid, at best. If you have a damned event down here, CLEAN IT UP. It's pretty simple.

I'm gonna stop now before I get too mad and write something really dumb that I regret later.

If you were down here and enjoyed the carnival, good for you. You can enjoy it again next year, but not at Fifth and Maine. Promise.

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