I am a Board Member of the Chico Running Club and spearheaded the campaign to save the July 4th Celebration at One Mile. Considering that just over three weeks ago the announcement was out that the traditional celebration was cancelled, I believe the 1500 people that were at our event had a wonderful day including the hundreds of kids at the concert and run.
I want to thank Sheriff Kory Honea and his fabulous pancake breakfast crew, the Chico Community Band, Developmental Disabilities Sports Fund, Chico Noon Exchange Club, Recology, my Chico Running Club Board Members for working with me on this project, and my wife and fellow Chico Running Board Member, Krista Stone for supporting me and backing me up these last few weeks (and decades).
It was difficult to put together such a coalition in a matter of days. It is now time to look at our future options for next year. I propose that all organizations interested in making sure the 4th of July celebration continues in 2017 and for decades to come contact me at Randall@ElectStone.com so we can have a public meeting in the near future to determine private fundraising, more public activities like sack races, pie eating contests, and other family fun events.
It doesn’t make sense to me that the City of Chico remains absent in supporting community celebrations like the 4th of July. The City has removed itself from permitting community organizations to use City buildings and conference rooms without exorbitant fees. While cost recovery is important to the City, I believe it is inappropriate for the City to charge private entities for the City’s own services and events, such as candidate forums and community celebrations like the 4th of July. I propose that the City of Chico work with Developmental Disabilities Sports Fund – next year’s event host – in developing a permanent plan to ensure the celebration continues. This year’s celebration was possible because the community stepped up to support it. It is past time that the City begin its share of supporting the community in its community activities.