Annual Ridgecrest event in jeopardy

To the Editor:

The city of Ridgecrest’s hosting of the annual Viewfinders Grand Prix motorcycle race held the first Sunday of October at the Desert Empire Fairgrounds is in need of some local donations. Don Nay, the secretary for the motorcycle club that has staged this exciting local event here in Ridgecrest for the last 10 years, has written a letter to the Tourism Board asking the city for financial help.

According to Mr. Na, the club just barely broke even after last year’s event, and this year there is another extenuating factor which adds an additional $2,500 to their expenses — the cost of closing off streets surrounding the fairgrounds in preparation for racing. This was not a problem in past years because this money came from Police and Community Together (PACT), which is no longer available due to budget constraints.

It should be mentioned that this popular motorcycle event brings in about 1,200 racers and approximately three persons per racer for 3,600 to 4,800 tourists to our fair city. These extra tourists are always good for the various businesses in town, and we as a city should endeavor to keep this event going.

In this respect I should mention that $1,000 has already been donated by an anonymous person and the equally gracious Hampton Inn and SpringHill Suites as verified by the lovely Brandi Phillips. There still remains $1,500 to raise for this excellent event.

If you or your company would like to donate to this worthy cause, please don’t hesitate to contact Doug Lueck of RACVB at 760-375-8202 or Brandi Phillips at 760-446-1968. In closing must admit that I really have faith in the good people of this community and know they will come through in mitigating this present crisis. Good on ya, Ridgecrest!

Fredrick Gary Hareland

Story First Published: 2012-10-03