City fathers doing disservice to park

To Steve Kastens, my apologies for having raised my voice the other night at our meeting concerning the future of Fuji Park and fairgrounds. I believe that you have the users' best interests at heart, but it's very difficult having moved from Southern California to a lovely town like Carson City to see the board of supervisors talk "open space" and "quality of life" on the one hand, and behind the scenes scheme to sell park land.

A week ago Tuesday, the city manager, John Berkich, was on the news channel alluding to the park and fairgrounds as "found gold." The land on the north side of Old Clear Creek Road (the overflow parking lot of Fuji Park and fairgrounds), presently is in escrow to Costco Co. due to close mid-April. The land Berkich was referring to is the grassy park and arena area, which the supervisors are talking of making a strip mall of.

It's clear that dollar signs have outweighed their concern about the many users of that oldest and most beloved park and the only fairgrounds in Carson City. They're saying they'll build another one someplace else, but a preliminary study revealed a cost of $10 to $12 million to replace our old park and fairgrounds ... if the land is free.

What are our city father thinking of? We're already $2.2 million in the red! You don't hear the users saying they need a new park. Yes, it would be nice to use some of the $3.2 million from the Costco sale of our parking lot for a few improvements to this long neglected park; i.e., irrigation system, berms and trees along the north fence line, horse barn and paved parking on the west end. But the board of supervisors is "creating" a need for a new park ... to justify the sale of more park land.

Please continue supporting our efforts to save Fuji Park and fairgrounds where it is with the few park improvements we've planned. It's a great park. No amount of money can replace the proud smiles of the Carson High School Rodeo youth last weekend out there doing what they love doing. And what occupies their time and focus so they're not doing drugs or whatever? If our supervisors really want to be heroes, they'll get behind the users and save Carson City money at the same time.

I am a concerned citizen to save Fuji Park and fairgrounds.


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