LETTERS

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editor 560Editor,

To Saugeen Shores Council and taxpayers.

There seems to be some Town personnel who have a vision that new buildings and landscaping on the Port Elgin beach will bring more tourists back to our town.

Bricks and mortar are not the answer. The existing buildings on the beach have character and friendly, local people running them. If one of your kids drops his ice cream on the floor you pick it up, throw it into the garbage and buy another one.

These buildings are as good, if not better, than the shops in Sauble Beach and they are busy. The beach season of 3 to 4 months does not produce enough profit to allow spending thousands of dollars on new buildings. As long as buildings are clean, structurally safe and have a good product people will support the business.

HISTORY

Before the new pumping station was built at the bottom of Green Street there was an old building that had one of the best French fry businesses around (Gerry’s Fries) and it was going to lease part of the new building.

One of pubs uptown wanted the Town to put the section out for tender, which they did, and Gerry’s was outbid and then leased a building in Southampton where the business still operates.

The winning business asked the Town to allow a licensed patio, which the town turned down, so they withdrew their offer to lease part of the building.

The old King Eddie site, which was not owned by the Town and had a liquor licence, was purchased and a restaurant/patio business was built. That operation did a fair business but weather created a great problem so they applied for a 2 a.m. licence with live music on the patio.

Some area residents fought to stop it because of the noise it would create. The business did not get the extension.

The Town doesn’t need a restaurant patio business on the beach. We have enough places uptown for people to enjoy themselves. It could create a noise problem for area taxpayers because the lake amplifies the sound.

Let’s instead consider keeping it a family beach.

SOLUTION

The Town should work with the existing businesses in renewing current leases. The town should also practice what they preach. The number one complaint was the washrooms in the Green Street pumping station. We don’t need a $500,000 new building to fix the problem. We need someone in charge to make sure the staff that is hired to clean the washrooms do their job and report any problems they see.

One of the doors of the stall in the women’s washroom was off and laying there for at least 6 weeks and it might still be there. Paint and maintenance is a lot cheaper.
Take out the last part of the pumping station on the beach, which would give more towel space and would get rid the grass and weeds around it. This would make it easier to groom the beach.

Do not allow trailers to be parked on the beach. Move the Hydro bikes and stand up boards to the south end of the beach before someone gets hurt by getting hit by one of them.

The maximum number of volleyball courts on Port Elgin beach should be reduced to six.

The Town could put up a building behind the train station with moveable walls and lease out sections to businesses like Giggles in Sauble Beach, bike rental, clothing shop or a Dairy Queen. They all do a good business in Sauble Beach and a lot of tourists make side trips over because we do not offer these things here. These are the things that keep the tourist dollars in Saugeen Shores on those cool rainy days and could add a longer season on the beach.

We don’t need family pods in a new building, we need to be offering something for families to do so they come to Saugeen Shores. We should be trying to add to the attractions not trying to get rid of one of the last attractions for small children we have - The Train Station.

Storage of beach equipment could be in a new building behind the Train Station or in the building at the Trailer Park on Bruce Street.

We need to add a grate hooked to the sewer across the Green Street entrance to the beach so it catches the water running down the hill during rain storms to stop the beach from getting washed out.

The Town should put the beach money into the police building or maybe a swimming pool.

Ron Kelly,
Saugeen Shores