- COMMUNITY LINKS
RIDGWAY - The Ridgway Borough Council approved a request for the 13th Annual Ridgway Chainsaw Carvers Rendezvous to be held along Center Street during their regular meeting Monday night.
If all goes to plan, Center Street will be blocked off from S. Broad to Mill Street. Court Street and South Broad Street from Main Street to South Street will also be blocked off to make room for the event.
Liz Boni, co-owner of Appalachian Arts Studio in Ridgway and the main organizer of the event made the request.
"As we all know PennDOT is saying no Main Street," Boni said. "So we came up with a plan B which would be Center Street."
Initially the proposal was for South Broad Street to be closed to Center Street, but Boni proposed South Broad be closed off to South Street if more room is needed.
"As is we can do 135 carvers with 15 feet per carver," Boni said. "I'm asking permission, if needed to take the next block and that would suffice."
Ridgway Volunteer Fire Department assistant chief Joe Gasbarre stressed the importance of making sure lanes are cleared in the event of an emergency.
"There needs to be access around the fire hydrants as long as they don't block the fire hydrants at all and they maintain some form of access up through there," Gasbarre said.
Boni said everything can be torn down and moved before the fire department can get out of the building.
Councilman Frank Quattrone said he was not against the Rendezvous taking place on borough streets.
"I think it needs discussed and then I think this council needs to discuss this as a council and talk about it and decide," Quattrone said. "The article that was in the paper was a telephone call and not a borough council meeting and all he was asking me was my input and my input was to try and find out how the citizens in the town feel about the Rendezvous being on three borough streets for a whole week.
I am not against the Rendezvous. I never was and I have helped the Rendezvous in past years. That thing in the paper whether you took it as being good or negative was nothing against the Rendezvous. I think there was a lot of negative that came out of that little news article and it wasn't supposed to be that way."
A resident of South Street said she was concerned about the street being closed off for a week.
"I am not against the Rendezvous this is a whole different thing than tying up the street for the parade for a few hours," she said. "We are talking over a week. I am not thrilled about having chainsaws running from morning to night."
Councilman Ralph Dussia said the borough needs to give the event the opportunity to be in the borough.