EDITORíS DESK: If just one vegetableís life is saved...
Some things you get tired of writing about. You feel like a broken record, as if you've said it before and it didn't amount to a hill of beans.
Nevertheless (switching from second to first person, which is bad but not as bad as what I'm complaining about, I trust that you and I will agree), I've got this ink and I know how to use it! So let's go down that regulation road one more time, first offering up a moment of silence for the Farmers Market we used to know, with its trucks and booths lined up on either side of closed-off 24th Street by Bancroft Park. Many's the time I walked down that crowded aisle, with produce vendors shouting out deals on either side, and always the hordes of shoppers, even in rain or cold. True story: I wrote about the market (working at a different paper then) when it opened in 1988. The leader was an amiable lady (since passed on) named Betty Mull. She put the plan together with the Old Colorado City Associates (OCCA) business group as an offshoot of the downtown farmers market initially started by the CSU Extension Service. In the years since, according to current market president Frank Schmidt, it's become by far the most prosperous of the outdoor affairs that the Pikes Peak Farmers Market operates.
So why is local goverment messing with it, you might ask? Fixing what isn't broken? You and I could sit for hours with earnest police, firefighters and other safety-first city folks who would fill our ears with all the Good Reasons why only authorized barricade companies can position barricades and why a traffic plan for one closed-off block is essential to the well-being of the city as a whole, but the word "overkill" (with all its implications) keeps coming to mind.
Still, I want to be optimistic. The Bancroft Park fundraiser April 28 was a resounding success, and its improvement plans include accommodations for the market on its eastern side. Perhaps it will do even better there. At least till the city comes up with new regulations. Grr (as one might say).