To the Editor:
Come this December, Keizer will have a nighttime parade down River Road. When this was first brought to light it sounded like a neat idea. The city council is all in favor for it as it has elected to support it to the tune of $1,700. The more I think about it I am not too sure it is a great idea. The parade will copy the route of the Iris parade. Remember that occurs in daylight and in May when the weather can be warm and dry. A parade, in darkness, when the weather can be very cold and raining, does not sound like a lot of fun. I have attended the tree lighting ceremony at Walery Plaza and at times it was miserable. The good news was the lighting did not last too long! The parade promoters would like to ferry people from Keizer Station, be it the Volcano stadium, to River Road and back to help traffic congestion. This is good but it does not help the businesses along River Road. In fact the parade may hurt some businesses that are open.
My question is what is the city going to gain from, what I call, a Christmas parade at night? What is the motive for the parade? Who benefits? Will our hotel fill up with parade goers? Salem gave up the parade for reasons! Keizer will be spending precious money it does not have on traffic barriers and police at intersections. The people who live west of River Road could be trapped for hours if the parade lasts that long. I guess some church services or meetings will be impacted during the parade night.
I have been wrong before and I hope I am wrong again. I hope we have great weather and businesses do well!