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Opinion

July 30, 2013

Letter: City cannot turn its back on cycling race

To the editor:

I am writing on the behalf of supporting the Gran Prix of Gloucester cyclocross race.

I can’t believe the comments I read in the Times. How can the city of Gloucester pass up or turn its back on what has become the premier cross race on the East Coast?

I am a former cross racer and have volunteered as a helper setting up and taking down the race. The ECV (Essex County Velo) and Paul Boudreau take a very professional approach in the undertaking of the race and show the utmost respect and pride for Stage Fort Park.

This race brings revenue into the city during a time of the year when there is not much else going on. The race gives Gloucester global media and brings people from all over the country and the world. Also, the people who watch the race and the racers love the venue that Stage Fort Park offers.

They also show the utmost respect for our city — more respect than I’ve seen from some people who live in Gloucester and show little respect for the park by leaving trash and using the park for their dog’s bathroom.

I still can’t believe that any city councilor would not want to see a great thing happen in his city — a thing that brings so much good to his city, people, money and pride. Maybe he is trying to pacify a few constituents who walk their dogs in the park and are inconvenienced for a few days during the race. When all is said and done with the race, a few ruts that get repaired, some grass seed and by spring you never knew it happened.

To see the race go to Salem Willows would be a shame. It is also a good venue, but if the race goes there, Salem would benefit greatly from it and Gloucester would have nothing from it.

I fully agree with Heidi Wakeman, Miles Bryan and Robert W. Heidt Jr, CEO of the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce. After reading their letters, I just felt the need to write mine.

FRAN BEAULIEU

Woodbury Lane, Rockport

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