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aWhen I read the In My View piece "Wake up, Waitsfield" last week I had to reread it because I was unsure if the author was actually writing about The Valley or he had really wandered in from the land of some evil king. Maybe the writer has been playing too many computer games and the demons have taken him over.
My first reaction upon rereading the piece was "huh." Mr. Richichi clearly has a problem that most of us residents of Waitsfield do not have the clinical expertise to address.
Let's start with downtown Waitsfield. Every season the business owners
obviously spend lots of time, money and effort on landscaping and
keeping their properties looking great. We have the Farmers' Market,
the Festival of the Arts, shows at the Skinner Barn, the Crafts
Festival, the Baked Beads sale and hundreds of other events all year
long. Every time I attend one of these events I meet many Valley
residents and find that the rest of the crowd is made up of visitors to
As for the "low-end bohemian" comment, Mr. Richichi has obviously never scanned Mehuron's parking lot on a busy weekend to see the number of high-end cars with out-of-state plates and window stickers from elite prep schools and expensive private colleges. Hardly "low end"!
As for supporting local business I find that most of the great businesses in The Valley are well supported by locals. As for the restaurants in The Valley -- it is clear that The Valley has some great restaurants and some that are not as good and, as happens everywhere, the good restaurants thrive and the not so good ones don't.
I find that Mr. Richichi's comment about the need for "inexpensive" decorations like Waterbury really shows where the writer is coming from. If he thinks that cheap flags hanging on utility poles to inform the passerby what season it is are good for business he is dead wrong. I think that the great views of The Valley from Route 100 will clearly let our community's visitors know what season it is, as opposed to spending the town's funds on cheap decorations that we all know are made in China or some other low-wage country.
If Mr. Richichi's business is not going well in this recession he might want to look inward instead of insulting his new neighbors.
Jim Boylan lives in Waitsfield.