Parker King: Let Craig grow
July 1, 2015
To the editor
Craig won't beat Steamboat. As a life-time resident and Moffat County Alumni, it is disappointing to see how Craig is losing our small-town vibe. There used to be rodeos, golf tournaments and community activities every week or weekend during the summer. But where did it all go? Everyone knows that Craig won't draw the number of tourists that Steamboat does, with Mount Werner, Dude Ranches, Pro Rodeo and a concert series, just to name a few. But why can't Craig incorporate some of these ideas into our own? We can't rely on being the Elk Hunting Capital of the World as our main draw. There are 8 more months in the year that Craig could use to bring in tourists. We have ranches, the same Yampa River as Steamboat, prime snow machining, a beautiful golf course, baseball fields and wild horses — not to mention millions of acres of BLM/Forest land.
Yes, Whittle the Wood draws a crowd, but honestly why pack one weekend a summer with attractions that can be spread out through the entire summer? Summer in Craig kicks off during Grande Olde West Days and wraps up at the end of the fair. That means there are eight weeks in between then that can be used to draw in more tourists. And what do more tourists mean? More people wanting to move to Craig. However, the people in charge have to be willing to grow, add fun things to do and not keep it the way it has been. Craig has been going downhill during the past 10 years because the "Good Ol' Boys" don't want their ideas to be changed for the greater good. Craig can bring in business and add onto existing businesses, but there has to be cooperation all the way around. I think that the current City Council, and County Commissioners are trying to move Craig in the right direction, but are being road blocked by those who ultimately decide which regulations are enacted. City regulations that are hurting or are a potential threat to the economy need to be revisited and revised to promote growth. Steamboat will always grow, because they want it to grow. So why can't Craig do the same thing?