Thanks for town's bike race help
On behalf of the Jamestown Rotary Club, I want to thank each and every one of you for your patience and support in making the 32nd annual Jamestown Classic bicycle race a phenomenal success. There is no question that such an undertaking takes its toll on local activities, especially over a holiday weekend, but in the spirit of giving, as so many from Jamestown so often display, we believe that our effort and our mission extend beyond our personal needs.
As you likely know, this event raises substantial monies for the Jamestown Rotary Club, which allows us to tackle various projects within the community. Recently, we created Will's Rest, a public garden that was created in conjunction with input from neighboring homeowners, an idea germinating from a local student's essay submission in our annual Will Reynolds Essay and Poster Contest. We have contributed funds to the local school for new chairs for the band, and we have purchased a new scoreboard for the baseball field. We have also awarded scholarship money to local youths attending post high school education. On an international level, we continue to support a wheelchair project in Nicaragua, and we are tackling a literacy project in Ghana. These projects simply could not occur without the Jamestown Classic, and quite simply, the Jamestown Classic cannot occur without your assistance. For that, I extend my heartfelt appreciation to all of you.
More specifically, I would like to thank all of the local police officers who assisted us by directing traffic at critical intersections. This service is invaluable to us with respect to the protection of our participants, as well as the many people that visit the island simply to watch the event, thereby further sparking the economic livelihood of the entire community. Additionally, I would like to thank the medical personnel who care for those riders who suffer injuries while participating in the race. Knowing we have on-site medical treatment for any unfortunate accidents is a great relief to our organization, especially this year when we had slick roads from the early morning rain. I also want to extend my appreciation to the many donors who contribute to the event in a plethora of different ways - financially, donation of items, donation of premises, etc. Finally, I would like to extend my appreciation to the countless volunteers who give portions of their time to assist us with the event by monitoring intersections, repairing roads, driving pace cars or any other of the innumerable tasks that are required to operate this event. Again, without your volunteerism, this event would not be possible.
In closing, I would like to acknowledge the fact that there is always room for improvement, and as such, I would welcome any suggestions or constructive criticism that anyone could offer so that we may continue to tweak this event to make it the best event that it can be. In fact, in response to suggestions from the community, this year we incorporated a new event on Sunday - Rides 'N Strides for Humanity, followed by a pasta dinner and raffle. This event is a run/walk/ride charitable fundraiser that gives everyone in the community an opportunity to participate in the weekend festivities without the formality of a "race," while simultaneously minimizing the strain on the town on Monday during the Classic.
I believe this was a fantastic improvement to the Jamestown Classic, and it was an improvement that is the direct result of comments and suggestions from you, the community. No matter how big or small the praise, criticism or suggestion you may possess, I would love to hear it, as it is my desire to improve this event so that everyone benefits - local citizens, local merchants, and the local Rotary club - because the Jamestown Classic really does allow us to make a significant difference in the lives of individuals across the world and it starts with you, the Jamestown Community. Thank you!
James E. Walker, III, Esq.