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NASCAR weekend | Everything Bremerton

Hello from Las Vegas. I am on vacation and I am satisfying my full on passion for NASCAR racing this weekend.

It’s really too bad I have to travel all the way to Las Vegas to watch a race in person, but I so love hanging out with 150,000 of my fellow NASCAR fans. Washington had a shot for NASCAR but they blew it.

Alright, maybe Kitsap County was not the best fit given other regional choices, but our elected leadership in Olympia shot the opportunity down in such a manner that Washington state will most likely never have a chance at a venue of caliber again.

So, I and many other Northwest NASCAR fans take our money and spend it in another state that does provide a top class venue for the sport we all so love.

Adding insult to injury, my own community did not serve me well this past week. I booked an appointment last Saturday at a downtown Bremerton spa that I enjoy patronizing. Since I could not park near the spa itself, because of the latest vanity construction project currently underway on Fourth Street, I chose a spot on Pacific Avenue instead. I was slightly early for my appointment so I took the time to buy a coffee at Cornerstone Coffee and then headed to my appointment. It was my intention to be pampered for a couple of hours at the spa and then indulge in lunch at one of the various establishments downtown before heading home.

All of my lovely thoughts about how much fun it was spending time downtown were instantly dispelled when I spotted a lovely yellow parking ticket on my windshield. As a reward for patronizing downtown businesses and dropping a decent amount of money between two of the businesses and possibly a third, if I had not received the ticket, I now get to pay an additional $25 for my buy local endeavors.

City leadership has been studying the problems of downtown parking for years. Study time that has just continued to kick the can further and further down the road. Parking solutions that have come from the studies still only continue to punish the remaining Bremerton residents like myself who choose to go out of our way to support downtown businesses. The current policy also drives a rather large amount of potential patrons away.

My good friend and fellow Bremerton resident Robin Henderson is currently serving on the city conveyed parking committee. As I discussed my situation with him, he indicated that he wants to hear about experiences like mine, collect them and pass them along to the rest of the committee and to the city council.

If you have had such an experience or want to share the fact that parking issues keep you from patronizing downtown businesses, then please feel free to post your stories and comments to the online version of this column at bremertonpatriot.com or email the Bremerton City Clerk directly at city.council@ci.bremerton.wa.us, and be sure to reference that your submission is about city parking.

Citizen’s experiences and perceptions about downtown parking do matter. City leadership tends to marginalize the number of residents that are negatively impacted by current parking rules and restrictions that cater to controlling commuter and shipyard worker parking but only end up disenfranchising and penalizing the very citizens and businesses that they should be protecting.

I will be back next week from my NASCAR fun and look forward to hearing what all of you have to say.

 

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